Editor’s Note: Check out more photos from the day’s event on the Fort Knox flickr page.
Colors pass to new commander at uniquely engineered change of command ceremony
Commander of 20th Engineer Brigade, Col. Daniel Herlihy, passes the 19th Engineer Battalion colors to incoming Commander Lt. Col. Todd Bradford during a change of command ceremony at Fort Knox’s Tobacco Leaf Lake June 30, 2022. (Photo Credit: Jenn DeHaan, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL

FORT KNOX, Ky. – The 19th Engineer Battalion at Fort Knox welcomed a new commander during a unique ceremony at Tobacco Leaf Lake June 29, bidding farewell to the leader who has guided them the past two years.

Over 150 Soldiers, Family members and guests attended the outdoor change of command ceremony, where the traditional passing of the unit’s colors took place between outgoing commander Lt. Col. Christopher Beal and incoming commander Lt. Col. Todd Bradford.

Members of 19th Engineer Battalion line up for their June 30, 2022 change of command ceremony at Tobacco Leaf Lake, Fort Knox, Kentucky.
1 / 2 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Members of 19th Engineer Battalion line up for their June 30, 2022 change of command ceremony at Tobacco Leaf Lake, Fort Knox, Kentucky. (Photo Credit: Jenn DeHaan, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL
Members of 19th Engineer Battalion line up for their June 30, 2022 change of command ceremony at Tobacco Leaf Lake, Fort Knox, Kentucky.
2 / 2 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Members of 19th Engineer Battalion line up for their June 30, 2022 change of command ceremony at Tobacco Leaf Lake, Fort Knox, Kentucky. (Photo Credit: Jenn DeHaan, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL

Ceremony host Col. Daniel Herlihy, commander of 20th Engineer Brigade, traveled from Fort Bragg, North Carolina to oversee the event – which largely took place on float bridge segments on the water as well as on the bank – and share remarks about both leaders.

“It’s a great day to be a Castle Brigade Soldier,” said Herlihy. “It is my distinct honor to preside over the passing of the colors of the Seahorse Battalion.”

Providing a long list of successful feats the battalion achieved throughout Beal’s time in command, Herlihy said his presence will missed.

Change of command ceremony host Col. Daniel Herlihy, commander of 20th Engineer Brigade, prepares to board a floating bridge on Tobacco Leaf Lake with outgoing 19th Engineer Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Christopher Beal and incoming commander Lt. Col. Todd Bradford to perform the passing of the unit’s colors June 30, 2022.
1 / 3 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Change of command ceremony host Col. Daniel Herlihy, commander of 20th Engineer Brigade, prepares to board a floating bridge on Tobacco Leaf Lake with outgoing 19th Engineer Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Christopher Beal and incoming commander Lt. Col. Todd Bradford to perform the passing of the unit’s colors June 30, 2022. (Photo Credit: Jenn DeHaan, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL
Colors pass to new commander at uniquely engineered change of command ceremony
2 / 3 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Change of command ceremony host Col. Daniel Herlihy, commander of 20th Engineer Brigade, prepares to board a floating bridge on Tobacco Leaf Lake with outgoing 19th Engineer Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Christopher Beal and incoming commander Lt. Col. Todd Bradford to perform the passing of the unit’s colors June 30, 2022. (Photo Credit: Jenn DeHaan, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL
Members of 19th Engineer Battalion salute for the singing of the national anthem at their June 30, 2022 change of command ceremony at Tobacco Leaf Lake.
3 / 3 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Members of 19th Engineer Battalion salute for the singing of the national anthem at their June 30, 2022 change of command ceremony at Tobacco Leaf Lake. (Photo Credit: Jenn DeHaan, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL

“The accomplishments of this battalion are nothing short of incredible,” said Herlihy. “The Soldiers before me represent the very best of what our regiment has to offer. Chris and Tiffany: well done. Thank you for your leadership, and all the best to you and your Family.”

The ceremony host, 20th Engineer Brigade Commander Col. Daniel Herlihy, shares remarks about outgoing 19th Engineer Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Christopher Beal and incoming commander Lt. Col. Todd Bradford during the June 30, 2022 change of command at Tobacco Leaf Lake.
The ceremony host, 20th Engineer Brigade Commander Col. Daniel Herlihy, shares remarks about outgoing 19th Engineer Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Christopher Beal and incoming commander Lt. Col. Todd Bradford during the June 30, 2022 change of command at Tobacco Leaf Lake. (Photo Credit: Jenn DeHaan, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL

Following Herlihy’s speech, Beal took to the castle-shaped podium to address his former Soldiers.

“Wow team, the last 24 months have flown by,” said Beal. “There’s not a better way to capture the essence of our battalion’s accomplishments, prestigious history and capabilities than a change of command ceremony out on the water.”

Beal thanked his Family for supporting him throughout his career, his leaders within the battalion, and the many Soldiers who served within it. Before closing, he said there were only two things left to make the ceremony official. The first was handing over the official duty cell phone to Bradford, to which the crowd responded with laughter. The second, however, had special meaning.

Outgoing 19th Engineer Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Christopher Beal thanks his Family and former Soldiers for their support during his two years leading the battalion June 30, 2022 at the Tobacco Leaf Lake change of command ceremony.
Outgoing 19th Engineer Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Christopher Beal thanks his Family and former Soldiers for their support during his two years leading the battalion June 30, 2022 at the Tobacco Leaf Lake change of command ceremony. (Photo Credit: Jenn DeHaan, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL

“Last but not least: the battalion’s bridle and reins,” said Beal. “Hold on tight to the reins and know that leading the Seahorse Battalion will yield results beyond your expectations. I wish you all the best in your future endeavors. Get there, bridle and reins, stand tall.”

During his opening remarks, Herlihy said Bradford has proven to be an exceptionally capable leader throughout his career, and therefore extremely qualified to oversee the unique mission of the 19th.

“As Lt. Col. Beal departs, Lt. Col. Todd Bradford is exactly the right leader at the right time to take command of the Seahorse Battalion,” said Herlihy. “Todd’s a proven warfighter with all the right skills and experience to guide the team during these challenging and uncertain times.”

Bradford, who joins the 19th from the Pentagon, said he wouldn’t be standing before the crowd if not for those who have helped him along the way.

Incoming 19th Engineer Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Todd Bradford addresses attendees of the June 30, 2022 change of command ceremony at Tobacco Leaf Lake after officially receiving the battalion colors.
Incoming 19th Engineer Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Todd Bradford addresses attendees of the June 30, 2022 change of command ceremony at Tobacco Leaf Lake after officially receiving the battalion colors. (Photo Credit: Jenn DeHaan, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL

“I’m up here because of the Soldiers, peers and mentors that have guided me, inspired me, and taught me throughout my career,” said Bradford. “This is a humbling privilege, and one I take with utmost seriousness – because America’s sons and daughters have been placed within my care.”

Over the course of his more than 25-year career, Bradford has served as both an enlisted Soldier and an officer following his commissioning from Officer Candidate School at Fort Benning, Georgia in 2004.

Beal will leave Fort Knox to now take a position where he was first commissioned, Prairie View A&M University in Texas.