News: 709th HHD changes command
Story by Staff Sgt. Christina Turnipseed
GRAFENWOEHR, Germany - The Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 709th Military Police Battalion, 18th MP Brigade, 21st Theater Sustainment Command, held its change of command ceremony Feb. 12 in Grafenwoehr, Germany.
According to 709th officials, the roots of the HHD go back to World War II, when the battalion served with honor and distinction in Europe for more than 60 years, in addition to fighting in Normandy, Paris, Iraq, Kosovo and Bosnia taking pride in its service to our nation as embodied in its motto: Securitas Copiarun- “Guardians of the Troops.”
The outgoing commander Capt. Richard McWilliams is a native of Manila and married to Lavinia McWilliams of Romania. They have two children.
The incoming commander Capt. Elizabeth M. Obrecht is a native of Detroit, Mich., and her spouse is Bjorn Obrecht of Kashul, Germany.
Lt. Col. Steven Yamashita, commander of the 709th MP Bn. and a native of Guam, thanked the McWilliams for their service by stating, “Rich and Lavinia, please accept my sincere thanks on behalf of the battalion, when I say thank you for your commitment over the last year and thank you for all the time, energy and effort you have put into making this HHD a place where people want to live and serve.”
During his speech, McWilliams acknowledged his successor by saying, “I welcome Liz Obrecht and her husband Bjorn to the Guardian Family and wish you all the best. I know HHD is in great hands with you and that you will continue to fortify the fox hole and provide great leadership.”
During her speech, Obrecht accepted her new responsibilities by saying, “Today I assume my obligation to be fully committed to the mission, leaders, soldiers and family members of the 709th Bn Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment.”
Yamashita spoke of the way ahead for the unit. “As we move forward, we must continue to demand our soldiers meet the standard and live the Army values,” she said.