The military policemen and women of the 209th Military Police Company, 503d Military Police Battalion (Airborne), currently formed as Task Force Ripcord, gathered together as a company for the first time since they deployed to Afghanistan to perform a casing of the colors ceremony on July 28 at Kandahar Air Field, Afghanistan.

The military policemen and women of the 209th Military Police Company, 503d Military Police Battalion (Airborne), currently formed as Task Force Ripcord, gathered together as a company for the first time since they deployed to Afghanistan to perform a casing of the colors ceremony on July 28 at Kandahar Air Field, Afghanistan.
Casing of the colors is a long-held military tradition, which signifies the movement of unit.
The ceremony was held to recognize the successful completion of the 209th Military Police Company’s mission in southern Afghanistan and for their safe return home to Louisiana. The soldiers of 209th MP Company experienced a mission set unlike any other throughout the course of their 12-month deployment.
“The warriors deterred aggression, helped support regional stability and reassured the people of Afghanistan,” said Capt. Abby Lanni, the 209th MP company commander.
They conducted numerous patrols with their Afghan Uniformed Police partners in an effort to mentor and professionalize the Afghan Police force.
Subsequent mission requirements forced multiple realignments that placed the various platoons under the operational control of four different Security Forces Assistance Teams and two different battalions, the 503d Military Police Battalion (Airborne) and 8th Squadron, 1st U.S. Cavalry Regiment.
Providing unique capabilities that the military police are trained for, the 209th MP Company soldiers expertly mentored the Afghan Police and conducted more than 1,000 combat patrols in Kandahar City.
“[The 209th MP Company] had many different missions and many different chains of command,” said Lt. Col Terry Nihart, the 503rd MP Battalion (ABN) commander. “They endured numerous moves and FOB closures, yet, through it all, they endured, and through it all they performed incredibly.”
The company was dispersed throughout their entire deployment, yet the resilience of the soldiers was evident through their distinguished accomplishments in Kandahar City. It was not uncommon to see soldiers making significant contributions throughout the battlefield under different battle space owners in Kandahar City, said 1st Sgt. Robert Goodenow, the 209th MP Company.
“The warriors took their challenge in stride and never backed down from any mission,” Lanni said. “They supported all the various units that relied on them and did it with strength and unparalleled resilience.”
“You name a mission and the 209th MP Company did it, and they did it extremely well,” Nihart said. “There are many of us at the battalion and brigade level who are thankful for what this unit has been able to accomplish and how flexible they were in doing so.”