By Spc. Alan Graziano, 95th Military Police BattalionOctober 5, 2010
MANNHEIM, Germany - The unit formerly known as the 9th Military Police Detachment held a ceremony Sept. 29 at the Coleman Gym in Mannheim, Germany, to welcome a new commander and to formally recognize their transition into what is now known as USARCF-E, or U.S. Army Regional Correctional Facility-Europe.
The significance of the event was highlighted by the array of guests who came to take part in the ceremony. Maj. Gen. Patricia McQuistion, the commanding general of the 21st Theater Sustainment Command, and Brig. Gen. Jimmie Jaye Wells, the deputy commanding general of the 21st TSC, were in attendance along with French and German police and the command team from the 18th Military Police Brigade.
The transfer from operating as a military police detachment to operating as USARCF-E is the final chapter in a process that began in 2007.
The Army Corrections Command was activated in Washington, D.C., in 2007 with the intent of aligning Army corrections facilities under a single organization. With the inactivation of the 9th MP Det. and the activation of USARCF-E, that process has been completed for the corrections facility here, and it now falls under the U.S. Army Corrections Activity-Europe.
Capt. Willie Harris, the commander of the 9th MP Det., was first to speak at the event where he said his farewells and thanked the leadership of the 95th Military Police Battalion and the 18th MP Bde. for their support during his time in command.
Harris made a point to note the impact of the inactivation of the 9th MP Det. when he said, "Today truly marks a significant point in military history that will bring a close to a great legacy."
After his farewell speech, Harris and 1st Sgt. Samuel Paris, the first sergeant of the 9th MP Det., furled their unit's guidon to signify the unit had been officially inactivated.
With the inactivation of the 9th MP Det., it was time to activate the new unit by unfurling the new facility guidon. This honor was performed by Maj. Chad Goyette, the facility commander, and Master Sgt. Ronald Hussung, the facility sergeant major.
With that action completed, USARCF-E now aligns directly under the Army Corrections Command. However, the 18th MP Bde. will maintain operational control of the organization.
In keeping with the theme of change, the new guidon was then transferred between Goyette and Maj. Beth Richardson, the incoming facility commander of USARCF-E, signifying the new change of facility commander.
Col. Thomas Evans, the 18th MP Bde. commander, spoke during the ceremony and made sure to thank and praise the outgoing detachment and facility leadership, as well as all of their Soldiers, for always accomplishing their duties with excellence. Evans expressed his trust and confidence in the new commander as the unit moves forward on its new path.
Goyette's speech expressed his confidence in the facility and staff working there, saying, "Though today officially marks the end of the 9th Military Police Detachment, it does not end the tradition of excellence that the Soldiers, sailors, airmen and civilians of this organization have embodied over the years. The men and women standing in front of you and sitting amongst you today will simply transition these high standards of excellence into a new organization."
Richardson commented on how well the facility has been maintained by Goyette and Harris and how proud she is to take command of such a facility, and thanked them for making a smooth transition for her into her new position.