By G. Anthonie Riis | Fort Knox NewsJuly 1, 2019
In a ceremony marking a change of responsibility for 19th Engineer Battalion, Command Sgt. Maj. Raymond Lathan Jr. relinquished the reins of the unit to Command Sgt. Maj. William Nicholson at Fort Knox's Sadowski Center June 28.
Lieutenant. Col. Brad Morgan, the 19th Engineer Battalion commander, presided over the ceremony, explaining how Lathan was his first contact at Fort Knox, the two having worked in tandem ever since.
"When I first arrived about a year ago, I texted him, 'On the ground. Inprocessing,' to which he replied [with] five words -- 'Get ready for the ride!'" Morgan reminisced. "Little did I know it was an exclamatory statement that would prove true literally every day since.
"Get ready, Command Sgt. Maj. Nicholson!"
Lathan said his engineers have not only handled the heavy lifting of engineer demolition and construction missions at Fort Knox, they have also shouldered other missions deemed just as important.
"From January 2018 to June of this year, we've conducted 466 military honor funerals in five states -- 34 of those were in one weekend," Lathan said. "When there's something hard to be done, the Army sends the engineers. When there are seemingly impossible things to be done -- things that need to be done right the first time -- The Army sends the 19th Engineers.
"This is an excellent unit, and we strive for excellence the first time."
Nicholson praised the organization that Lathan leaves behind, saying he was ready to serve its senior noncommissioned officers.
"You have left in your wake a great organization full of professionals and experts due to your dedication," Nicholson said. "For the Soldiers, NCOs and officers of the Seahorse Battalion, I am excited to get to know you and work alongside of you in the trenches, writing the next chapter of this organization's history."