Story and photos by
Sgt. Marcus Fichtl
8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command
WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD — The 19th Military Police Battalion (Criminal Investigation Detachment), 6th Military Police Group, cased its colors and prepared for nine months overseas during a deployment ceremony, here, Aug. 3.
The more-than-30-Soldier-strong unit will take charge of CID operations in Afghanistan and Kuwait in support of operations Enduring Freedom and New Dawn, respectively.
The 19th “Pacific Justice” Bn. (CID) — a unit focused on technical capability versus sheer strength of force — will experience its second deployment after transitioning from Korea to Hawaii in 2009.
The battalion also holds the title of the first CID battalion headquarters deployed to OEF.
“This formation in front of you has been tasked with a challenge of supporting our nation’s and coalition’s warfighters as they continue the important mission to provide stability, security, rule of law and an opportunity to a people,” said Lt. Col. Shannon-Mikal Lucas, commander, 19th MP Bn. (CID). “They will deploy to a country that is at war within itself and from outside.
“(We) will deploy and spend the next nine months conducting felony criminal investigations and support efforts associated with forensic application, biometrics and execute investigative mentoring throughout the U.S. Central Command theater of operations,” Lucas added.
To support the coalition mission, the unit gathered volunteers from CID units across the Army and attached them to increase their mission capability.
The unit and its augmenters trained for months to build unit cohesion under the guidance of the 6th MP Group at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., and with the support of the 8th MP Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, here.
“We are a team that consists of organic Soldiers from the battalion, perfectly augmented with skills and talents from the 6th MP Group and CID units across the Army,” Lucas said. “We are a police justice ohana.”
The 19th MP Bn. (CID) gelled and stands ready to deploy, according to Col. Robert Burk, commander, 6th MP Grp.
“They are a team; they are prepared to serve their fellow Soldiers and their commanders; they will continue the legacy of those who went before them; and they are ready,” Burk said. “I can tell you I’m very proud of their accomplishments.”
As the battalion headquarters deploys, two pillars of strength will keep the unit focused — a strong rear detachment that will oversee CID operations in the Pacific, and strong families who will propel the deployed Soldiers forward.
A sense of mutual sacrifice, Lucas said, allows the Soldier and families to survive.
“It is pride and pride alone, not pay or fame, that lives at the heart of our duty,” Lucas said. “It’s our passion and fire that fuel what needs to be done.”