2d Tank Battalion, 2d Marine Division, held its final change of command ceremony on Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, June 12th.

At the ceremony, Lt. Col. Charles D. Nicol relinquished command of 2d Tank Battalion to Lt. Col. Matthew A. Dowden.

“It has been an absolute honor to serve in the Iron Horse,” said Lt. Col. Nicol. “I have witnessed the strength of this battalion, and I urge you to continue to uphold excellence through deactivation and beyond. Lt. Col. Dowden has my utmost trust and confidence, and is a clear choice to lead this battalion,” he concluded.

In accordance with Marine Corps Force Design 2030, 2d Tank Battalion will be deactivated and divested this year in stride to optimize the force for naval expeditionary warfare. The historic assumption of command makes Dowden the unit’s last commanding officer.

“Taking command of 2d Tank Battalion is a humbling and unique opportunity,” said Lt. Col Dowden. “2d Tanks has distinguished itself on numerous occasions since its activation in 1936, and I could not be more honored to finish this storied chapter of Marine Corps’ history and preserve the legacy of the Iron Horse Battalion.”

Prior to assuming command, Lt. Col. Dowden had previously served as both the operations officer and the executive officer of 2d Tank Battalion in 2011 and 2019, respectively. Most recently, Dowden served with Task Force-Southwest, Afghanistan, as the future plans officer.