With new military commander, Natick Labs presses on with mission

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The recent naming of Brigadier General Daniel P. Hughes as the new commander at the US Army Natick Soldier Systems Center is helping to quell fears that the base — the only active-duty Army installation in New England — could be shut down as a cost-cutting measure.

Hughes replaces John P. Obusek, a civilian who had served as interim senior manager of the equipment research and testing facility after last fall’s departure of Brigadier General John McGuiness. A number of elected officials in the state had expressed concerns that keeping the base under civilian command would make it an easier target for closure.

Lieutenant Governor Tim Murray said having a general in command “certainly strengthens the case” for the base staying open.

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