By Sgt. Matthew FunkJuly 30, 2008
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. - The afternoon sun shone brightly across the grass and buildings on Peterson Air Force Base. Outside the massive dark glass structure of Building 3, a sharp corner points ominously toward the dark reaches of space, beyond the light blue skies, declaring the building's true purpose. Inside the steel and glass structure of U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command's operational headquarters, the Space Soldiers of the United States Army are hard at work - ensuring space superiority on a constant basis. It was only too fitting that the change of leadership for Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 53rd Signal Battalion, would occur at such a location.
On July 8, Capt. Michael Euperio, with fiancAfAe Kelly O'Boyle present and representing his family, passed the responsibility, leadership and mission of company commander to Capt. Jonathan Gendron. A signal orange guidon bearing the letters "HQ" was passed to Gendron from Battalion Commander, Lt. Col. Patrick Kerr, another leader representing the exciting new changes yet to be seen in the 53rd Signal Battalion.
Though the pride of the unit was passed from one set of hands to the next, the memories shared with Euperio will continue to remain with the Soldiers of this command. A handful of early morning trips up the Incline, Barr Trail, and even Pikes Peak are still talked about on the operations floor.
The hail and farewell dinners for at least two dozen incoming and outgoing personnel, all organized by the commander, allowed the unit to properly recognize Families and the contributions made by individual Soldiers during their tenure with the unit. The jokes and roasts shared by the Soldiers and commander at the dining out in 2007 still bring laughs almost nine months later.
Photos from Army Physical Fitness Tests, Sergeants' Time Training, AWT, the unit ski trip, unit organizational day, reflexive fire range, and many other events of the past two years under the command of Euperio, remain posted around the unit and on the unit's hard drive - remnants of the command that Soldiers several years from now will look at with respect for the history of the company.
The Soldiers of HHC, 53rd Signal Battalion look forward to continuing this legacy with their new commander.