Soldiers from the 504th Military Police Battalion, 42nd Military Police Brigade, received awards Tuesday for their outstanding achievements after competing and winning in not one, but two competitions against other units within U.S. Army Forces Command.
During a visit to Joint Base Lewis-McChord for a Mission Readiness Brief, Gen. Robert Abrams, U.S. Army Forces Command commander, took a moment to personally recognize the Soldiers.
The first award presented was to Sgt. 1st Class Jason Pickett, named Career Counselor of the Year in the command.
Abrams said being a retention noncommissioned officer is not an easy job.
“Being a Retention NCO is really hard work and requires commitment and dedication, complete selflessness, Abrams said. “The fact that he (Pickett) was the best retention NCO on JBLM is a big deal.”
During brief remarks at the awards ceremony, Abrams congratulated Pickett and thanked him for his dedication and contributions as a career counselor.
“Across all the stars of retention posts that we have in U.S. Army Forces Command, for you to be recognized as the top retention NCO is actually an incredible accomplishment,” Abrams said.
The second award, known as the Eagle Award, was presented to the 95th Military Working Dog Detachment, 504th MP Bn. The Eagle Award is given annually to the command’s best small MP company working dog detachment.
“We submit our packets and books showing our accomplishments throughout the year — our training proficiency rates, our number of deployments, volunteer hours and our AKIA (Annual Kennel Inspection and Assessment),” said 1st Lt. Carmon Johnson, detachment platoon leader.
The 95th Military Working Dog Detachment was reactivated at JBLM in 2012.
“This is the first time we have won it, and we are excited and proud of winning this award,” Johnson said.
Abrams spoke about the importance of military working dogs and the time and dedication it takes to train them.
“Military working dogs, especially explosion detection dogs, have saved countless lives,” Abrams said. “To train them and sustain them and maintain them for worldwide deployment is an unbelievable amount of work inside our kennels. We recognize annually the best kennel, the best military working dog detachment within FORSCOM.
“The standards are very, very high, and it requires incredible discipline, sustained discipline, enforcement of our policies with regard to military working dogs and performance matters. This is a huge accomplishment for all of you, and my hat’s off to you; job well done.”