By Sgt. 1st Class Howard Reed (Japan)October 17, 2012
"It was truly an honor and a privilege for me to command team 58 and to also work alongside some of the best Department of the Army civilians and Japanese employees." said Lt. Col. Eulys "Bert" Shell, former commander, 58th Signal Battalion.
The ceremony was conducted with the army signal corps history as a theme. Team 58 used semaphore flags during the ceremony. The semaphore flags have been a symbol of the Signal Corps since 1868 and the current symbol, crossed flags and a torch, was adopted in 1884.
58th Signal also introduced to the hundreds in attendance another part of the unit's history recognizing Mr. Julian Antonio during the ceremony. Antonio retired from the battalion as a supervisor of the project support activity. More astounding is the fact Antonio began his military career on Okinawa in 1945 and ended his civil service with the unit in 2010 totaling more than 60 years of federal service.
Maj. Gen James T. Walton, commanding general, 311th Signal Command said although the 58th is inactivating it will be replaced by the 78th Signal Battalion headquartered at Camp Zama, Japan. The unit will continue the high pace workflow and excellent reputation the 58th has on Okinawa and throughout the pacific.
"This is important to the United States Army Japan because the operational support this command provides to the Pacific is critical and as part of the Army restructuring, realigning and rebalancing itself as campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan either are or near completion there are some changes that will be needed."
Walton added that the Soldiers of the 333rd and 349th signal companies will stay in its organic structure under the 78th Signal Battalion and continue to produce high quality products and services that remain exceptional.
This was the third inactivation ceremony for the unit since its establishment in 1941 at Camp Peay, Tennessee.