Camp Casey, South Korea, July 14, 2021 – It was a day of heartfelt remarks and memories. The U.S. Army Garrison (USAG) Casey community bid a sad farewell to Command Sgt. Maj. Jason Hathaway during a ceremony at Camp Casey’s Warrior Club, June 25, 2021.
Hathaway retired after 28 years of service. Receiving the colors during the ceremony, Command Sgt. Major Wayne Butterbrodt assumed responsibility of the community of approximately 10-thousand personnel at the U.S. Army's most forward-deployed and permanently-stationed installation. Camp Casey is about 20 minutes from the DMZ.
“On behalf of the Installation Management team, thank you for your 28 years of service and sacrifice,” said Craig L. Deatrick and Command Sgt. Major Jason Copeland in an official statement that was read during the event. “A special thanks to your family as they have relocated homes, schools and supported you through this incredible career. Thank you for all your hard work and dedication.”
Hathaway, who enlisted in 1993, began his Army career at basic and advanced individual training at Fort McClellan, Ala.
"I left the Florida sunshine behind to do my five years and become a Florida State Trooper," he said. Obviously plans changed. ”From the beaches of Port St. Joe, Fla., to beautiful Camp Casey, Korea, I am truly blessed.”
“My first duty station was Fort Riley, Kansas. I was excited about being a military policeman. The Kansas winter was a far cry from the Florida beaches and the warm weather of my childhood," he said.
Yet, he admitted the experience was the foundation of his successful professional and personal life.
San Antonio, canine school and becoming a military working dog expert was another significant experience.
“I spent 21 years in the canine community and it’s also where I met my future wife,” he said. “As you know military spouses don’t get recognized like they should. Laura is the reason I’m here. You are the glue that has kept us together.”
Having served all over the United States and during deployments in Cuba and Afghanistan as well as assignments at Johnson Island, Camp Zama, Japan and Ft. Shafter, Hawaii. Hathaway is recognized as a caring and compassionate leader, a coach, mentor, confidante and valued advisor.
“I’m glad to be here to honor your father, who is a mentor, leader and friend,” Col. Ellis R. Baker, the USAG Yongsan-Casey garrison commander said to Hathaway’s three sons, Blake, Adam and Joshua. “People look to someone they aspire to be [actor, influencer, etc.]. Your father is ‘that guy.' He embodies that kind of character… it’s what other people try to do.”
Hathaway received numerous awards, including the Legion of Merit and is inducted into the Order of the Marechaussee Silver, the highest honor to be granted a military police officer. It’s named after the corps formed to police the Army and secure fugitives in 1778 at Valley Forge by Gen. George Washington.