New York Army National Guard Major Frank Engle, a Little Falls resident, takes command of Central New York infantry battalion
Engle to lead the Utica-based 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry, with elements in six counties
UTICA, N.Y. (09/13/2022) — Major Frank Engle, a Little Falls, N.Y. resident and a veteran of the war in Afghanistan, took command of the New York Army National Guard's 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry during a September 10 ceremony at the battalion's headquarters in Utica.
Engle has served his entire career with the New York Army National Guard since his commissioning as a lieutenant from the ROTC program at Siena College in Loudenville, N.Y.
Engle replaced Lt. Col. Mathew Kilgore, who led the battalion since January 2020. Kilgore now serves as the deputy operations officer as a full-time active/Guard and Reserve Soldier at the Joint Force Headquarters in Latham, N.Y.
The 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry is headquartered in Utica and has elements upstate New York in Morrisonville, Gloversville, Leeds, Ogdensburg, and Ithaca.
Engle served in a multitude of leadership and staff positions, first as an infantry reconnaissance platoon leader with the 2nd Squadron, 101st Cavalry Regiment before commanding Alpha Troop, 2nd Squadron, 101st Cavalry. His command time included a training deployment to the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, Calif., and the state response to Superstorm Sandy in 2012.
After time as a staff officer with the squadron, Engle served as the deputy chief of plans for the 42nd Infantry Division Headquarters before his selection as the operations officer with the 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry Regiment in 2017. He followed that position as the battalion executive officer.
Engle then served as the operations officer for the 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, including the response efforts to the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020-2022. His most recent assignment was the training branch chief for the New York Army National Guard Joint Force Headquarters.
Engle's major awards include the Meritorious Service Medal with bronze oak leaf cluster, the Army Commendation Medal with bronze oak leaf cluster and the combat action badge. He is a graduate of the Armor Officer Basic and Captain's Career Course, Command and General Staff Officer's Course, Advanced Operations Course, Basic Airborne Course and Cavalry Leader's Course.
In his civilian capacity, Engle is a 7th grade social studies teacher at Dolgeville Central School in Dolgeville, N.Y.
Engle resides in Little Falls, N.Y., with his spouse Michelle Primeau and sons Stanley, and Silas.
The 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry Regiment is a light infantry battalion with approximately 800 Soldiers assigned to six companies located across Western, Central and Northern New York State.
The battalion has been heavily engaged in the Global War on Terrorism, serving on federal homeland defense duty in the wake of the September 11th attacks and then conducting combat operations in Iraq in 2004 and Afghanistan (Companies A, B and D) in 2007 and 2008. In 2009, the battalion conducted counterinsurgency training with the Royal Thai Army during exercise Cobra Gold.
The 108th Infantry Regiment was first organized as the 3rd Regiment N.Y. Infantry ("Third New York") in 1898 from several independent companies located in western New York. The Regiment mobilized for duty during the War with Spain in 1898 and served along the Mexican Border in 1916.
In World War I, the regiment was re-designated as the 108th Infantry and deployed to France with New York's 27th "Empire" Division, the unit best known for breaking the "impregnable" Hindenburg line.
The regiment mobilized with the 27th Division again in World War II, but was re-assigned in 1942 to the 40th Infantry Division, California Army National Guard for service in the Pacific.
The 108th Infantry returned to the New York Army National Guard and the 27th Division following World War II.
In 2004, the 2nd Battalion was mobilized for service in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and became the first infantry battalion from the New York Army National Guard to deploy for war since World War II.
Augmented by Soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 108th Infantry and 1st Battalion, 105th Infantry, the unit conducted combat operations with the 1st Infantry Division in the Sunni Triangle. The unit earned a Meritorious Unit Commendation for its duty in Iraq.
After returning from Iraq, the 1st Battalion and 2nd Battalion of the 108th merged under the 2nd Battalion's colors as the only active battalion of the Regiment. In 2007, the 108th Infantry mobilized three companies and dozens of individual Soldiers to deploy with the 27th Brigade Combat Team to Afghanistan.
In 2012 the battalion deployed to Afghanistan once again. The bulk of the battalion conducted security missions in Afghanistan, including participating in Operation Shrimps Net, a mission to help the Italian Army close down one of their Afghanistan bases. One company of the battalion remained in Kuwait to perform security missions there.
In 2019, the battalion sent Soldiers to participate in a Combined Joint Exercise - Operation Tradewinds in the Dominican Republic at Las Calderas Naval Base. The Soldiers trained with 21 different countries to enhance the collective ability of defense forces and constabularies, counter transitional organized crime, conduct humanitarian assistance / disaster relief operations, and develop stronger relationships and reenforce human rights ideals.
Most recently, from March 2020 through July 2022, hundreds of Soldiers from the battalion mobilized in response to the coronavirus pandemic, supporting testing and vaccination sites, supporting food distribution or other missions in support of the state Department of Health.
Following the January 6, 2021 U.S. Capitol riot, the battalion mobilized for three months to provide additional security to the presidential inauguration, ensuring the peaceful transfer of power and helping to secure our nation's Capitol.