Brig. Gen. Randy Alewel, the commander of the 35th Engineer Brigade, pins the Meritorious Service Medal on Lt. Col. John Oberkirsch, the commander of the 1140th Engineer Battalion. Oberkirsch received the medal for his dedication and superior level of leadership. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Sarah E. Lupescu, Missouri National Guard).
By Sgt. Sarah Lupescu
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - A Missouri Army National Guard Soldier was recently awarded the Meritorious Service Medal by Brig. Gen. Randy Alewel, the commander of the 35th Engineer Brigade.
Alewel recognized Lt. Col. John Oberkirsch, of Jefferson City, for his exceptional service as the commander for the 1140th Engineer Battalion, based in Cape Girardeau.
"Lt. Col. Oberkirsch has done an outstanding job and has had a successful battalion command," Alewel said. "He set the standard for individual Soldier readiness in the engineer brigade and gave us some of the procedures so we could put them in place for the entire brigade."
Oberkirsch received the medal for his dedication and superior level of leadership. Those qualities made him an invaluable asset to the 1140th Engineer Battalion and the Missouri National Guard, Alewel said.
"This award is a pretty big deal," Oberkirsch said. "My goal was to reestablish the battalion's identity, so that's what I really tried to do and I think I've accomplished that."
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Col. David Boyle congratulates Lt. Col. John Oberkirsch, the commander of the 1140th Engineer Battalion, for receiving the Meritorious Service Medal for his dedication and superior level of leadership in the Missouri National Guard. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Sarah E. Lupescu, Missouri National Guard).