USAG HUMPHREYS, South Korea – After serving for two years as the commander of the 719th Military Intelligence Battalion, Lt. Col. Nora Flott passed command of the battalion to Lt. Col. Sunny Kuehl during a change of command ceremony held at Zoeckler Field, here, June 3.
“What an honor to be standing here today,” Flott told the assembly. “I am forever grateful to have had such a tremendous opportunity of leading our finest Soldiers and the Pyeongtaek Mission Center.”
During the traditional passing of the colors, Flott, outgoing commander, passed the unit colors to Col. Paul Oh, commander, 501st Military Intelligence Brigade, who, in turn, passed the colors and their symbolic responsibilities to Kuehl.
The passing of the colors is a time-honored tradition associated with the changing of unit commanders. As the incoming commander accepts the colors, they also accept the charge of leading their new unit and maintaining the mission set it is charged with fulfilling.
Oh, who served as host of the ceremony, told the audience that while watching the passing of the colors between two great leaders, they were also celebrating the enduring mission of the 719th MI Battalion, the Silent Warriors.
“Perhaps more than any other battalion in this brigade, the Silent Warriors conduct their mission in utmost secrecy,” said Oh. “Because of the nature of their sensitive signal intelligence mission, it’s difficult to showcase the talents of these amazing Soldiers and Civilians.”
Oh continued, they will have to take his word for it that behind the wire, extraordinary intelligence work takes place with the combined efforts of the Soldiers and Civilians of the 719th, Special U.S. Liaison Advisor Korea (SUSLAK), and their Republic of Korea Partners. He also commented that they could not have asked for a better commander than Lt. Col. Nora Flott, whose dedication to the people in her formation was truly inspiring.
Oh also welcomed Kuehl, saying, “Congratulations on taking the mantle of command. There is absolutely nothing like it. Lead with passion, humility and joy. Serve those under your charge. I know you are up to the challenge.”
During her speech, Flott said that when her daughters were small and asked what her job was she told them that, “Your momma tells the good boys where the bad boys are.” However, now after the tremendous progress the battalion has made, she tells everyone that her job is to “make the impossible, possible.”
Flott went on to thank her husband and daughters for being there for her during her time in command. She also thanked the officers, noncommissioned officers, Soldiers, Civilians, and Partners for continuing to execute their mission during COVID, even while enduring their own hardships.
“I am so proud of this battalion, this brigade, this mission, and SUSLAK,” said Flott. “We have come so far and made so many impossibles, possible.”
Flott will go on to serve as a professor of military science at Notre Dame University.
Kuehl, who came to the battalion from Fort Belvoir, VA, where she served as chief of intelligence and security for the Army’s Rapid Equipping Force, thanked Oh for the opportunity to command the 719th.
Addressing her formation, Kuehl said, “Going forward, we will continue striving together with all our Partners as one team – improving capabilities and strengthening our Alliance.”
The 501st Military Intelligence Brigade provides indications and early warning of actions by opposing forces that could threaten the tense but stable peace in the Republic of Korea. In the event of hostilities, the brigade’s mission shifts to providing combined, multi-discipline intelligence and force protection support to the United Nations Command/Combined Forces Command, the CFC Ground Component Command, and their subordinate units.