Historic Harlem Hellfighters conducts command change at Camp Smith on Sunday, October 22
CAMP SMITH TRAINING SITE, CORTLANDT MANOR, NEW YORK (10/20/2023) (readMedia)-- The New York Army National Guard's 369th Sustainment Brigade-- made famous as the Harlem Hellfighters during World War I-gets a new commander and a new sergeant major during a Sunday afternoon ceremony at Camp Smith Training Site near Peekskill.
Col. Patrick Clare, a resident of Clifton Park, will replace Col. Seth Morgulas, a Scarsdale resident, as the commander.
Command Sgt. Major Lyland Jones from Trumbull, Connecticut, will replace Command Sgt. Major Curtiss Moss from Poughkeepsie, as the senior enlisted leader for the brigade.
Members of the press are invited to cover the ceremony, which will be held on the parade ground.
WHO: Col. Patrick Clare, the incoming commander; Col. Seth Morgulas, the outgoing commander; Command Sgt. Major Lyland Jones, the incoming command sergeant major; Command Sgt. Major Curtiss Moss, the outgoing Sgt. Major; and Brig. Gen. Joseph Biehler, the commander of the 53rd Troop Command and the presiding officer.
WHAT: Traditional change-of-command in which Biehler will transfer the flag, or colors, of the 369th Sustainment Brigade from Morgulas to Clare, signifying the change of leadership. Traditionally the unit colors marked the location of the commander on the battlefield. The ceremony was designed to allow the Soldiers for see who they would follow in combat.
The transfer of responsibility between the enlisted leaders will follow the command change.
WHEN: 1 p.m., Sunday, October 22, 2023
WHERE: Camp Smith Training Site, Route 202, Courtlandt Manor, NY
Press will be able to capture still and video images of the ceremony, as well as troops in formation. Interviews can be arranged with the commanders and Brig. Gen. Biehler.
Members of the press who wish to cover this event must contact Major Gregg Zavadsky at 212-576-0744 for access to this secure military facility.
Colonel Patrick Clare
Col. Patrick Clare enlisted in the New York National Guard in 1994 as a truck driver and became an officer in 2000 after completing Officer Candidate School.
Clare has served in a number of logistics positions to include forward support battalion company commander, forward support battalion commander, brigade logistics officer, Assistant Chief of Staff for Logistics for the 42nd Infantry Division, deputy commander of the 53rd Troop Command, and Joint Force Headquarters logistics officer.
He deployed to Iraq in 2004/2005 as the transportation officer for the 42nd Infantry Division in Tikrit. And in 2011 he deployed to Kuwait as brigade logistics officer for the 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team. He also deployed to Kuwait as the chief logistics officer for the 42nd Infantry Division in 2020.
He also responded to New York City in 2001 in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Clare is a 2002 Graduate of Nyack College with a BS in Business Administration and a 2019 graduate of the U.S. Army War College with a master's in strategic studies.
His awards include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Iraqi Campaign Medal, and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.
Clare works as a federal technician serving as the New York Army National Guard Director of Logistics.
He resides in Clifton Park with his wife Nicole, their son Ryan, and daughter Michaela.
Colonel Seth Morgulas
Colonel Seth L. Morgulas has commanded the 369th Sustainment Brigade since 2019. He was commissioned from the Johns Hopkins University ROTC program in 1993.
His past assignments include platoon leader and company executive officer while serving on active duty and as force modernization officer for both the 2nd Armored Division and 4th Infantry Division.
While serving in the New York Army National Guard he has served as a headquarters company commander, personnel officer and logistics officer, and executive officer at the battalion level and a battalion commander. He has served on the brigade and division staffs.
He deployed to Iraq from 2004 to 2005 as an artillery battery commander training Iraqi soldiers. He served as the commander of the 369th Special Troops Battalion while deployed to Kuwait in 2016 and 2017.
His awards include the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Combat Action Badge, the Army Parachutist Badge, and the Meritorious Unit Commendation.
Morgulas holds a Juris-Doctorate from the University of Chicago Law School and a Master of Strategic Studies from the United States Army War College.
Command Sgt. Major Leylan Jones
Command Sgt. Major Leylan Jones enlisted in the active Army in 1997. He has served in non-commissioned officer positions ranging from squad leader to battalion command sergeant major in infantry, finance, and logistics units.
He deployed to Balad, Iraq from 2003 to 2005 as a mortar team squad leader. He deployed to Talil, Iraq from 2009 to2010 as finance detachment sergeant.
His civilian education consists of a Master of Science in Accounting from Mercy College and a Bachelor of Science in Accounting with a Minor in Computer Applications from Lehman College.
Jones is a graduate of many military schools to include the Senior Leader Course, the Senior Enlisted Joint Military Professional Course, and the Sergeant Majors Academy.
His awards include the Bronze Star, the Meritorious Serve Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal, and the Noncommissioned Officer professional development Ribbon.
Command Sgt. Major Curtis Moss
Command Sgt. Major Curtis Moss enlisted in the United States Army in 1987 and served on active duty until 1991.
He joined the New York National Guard in 1996, assigned to the 1st Battalion, 156th Field Artillery.
He has served at every level of noncommissioned officer leadership.
He responded to the attacks on the World Trade Center in September 2001 and performed airport security following the attacks.
He deployed to Iraq in 2004 with the 1st Battalion, 258th Field Artillery, where he led a 32-Soldier force protection and convoy security team.
His military education includes all four Noncommissioned Officer Development Courses culminating in his graduation from the U.S. Army Sergeants Major Academy in 2018.
Moss's awards include the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal (4th award), the Army Achievement Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.
369th Sustainment Brigade
The 369th Sustainment Brigade traces its history back to the 369th Infantry Regiment of World War I. Nicknamed the Harlem Hellfighters, the unit was originally the 15th Regiment of the New York National Guard, which was created for Black Soldiers in a segregated Army.
During World War I the unit fought with the French Army, because the United States Army didn't think black Soldiers could fight.
The units Soldiers repeatedly distinguished themselves in battle and 171 won Frances highest battle honor, the Croix de Guerre. In 2015, Sgt. Henry Johnson was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroism in battle.
Colonel Benjamin O. Davis, who later became the first African- American general officer, commanded the regiment in 1938.
In 1940, when the National Guard was federalized at the start of World War II the regiment was converted into an antiaircraft unit. The Soldiers deployed to the Pacific where they were reorganized into smaller units guarding island bases against Japanese air attack.
The unit was reorganized during the Cold War period and eventually became the 369th Support Battalion, which went on to serve in the Persian Gulf War.
In 2006, the unit was reorganized again as the 369th Sustainment Brigade, which is designed to command multiple support units.
The brigade headquarters recently returned in the summer of 2023 from deployment to the Middle East.