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Home : News : State Partnership Program
NEWS | May 21, 2024

Pennsylvania Guard Military Police Deploying to Guantanamo Bay

By Sgt. 1st Class Shane Smith, 55th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, 28th Infantry Division

MIDDLETOWN, Pa. – More than 100 Pennsylvania Army National Guard Soldiers assigned to the 28th Military Police (MP) Company, 165th MP Battalion, 55th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, 28th Infantry Division, departed from Harrisburg International Airport May 19 to mobilize to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

The company is augmented by Soldiers from Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 165th MP Battalion, and Soldiers from the 1069th MP Company and the 28th Infantry Division's Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion.

During a departure ceremony for deploying Soldiers, family and friends at Fort Indiantown Gap May 18, the unit "cased" the company guidon. This tradition symbolizes a unit's change in location, as the guidon travels wherever the unit commander goes.

"We've received ample training and are ready for the mission at hand," said Capt. Victor Mayorquin, 28th MP Company commander. "We've been doing all we can to prepare for this, and I have full confidence in my unit's ability to complete our mission successfully and return home safely."

The unit will conducting detention operations for the Guantanamo Bay prison to ensure the secure, humane and orderly confinement of detainees and inmates.

"Several of the Soldiers mobilizing with us have been deployed to Guantanamo Bay in the past for a very similar mission," said Sgt. 1st Class Matthew Wilson, operations sergeant of the 28th MP Company. "The unit will definitely benefit from the experience and expertise those Soldiers are able to offer. To our younger Soldiers on this mission, I'd say to use this opportunity as a learning experience and an opportunity to become a better military leader."

Pennsylvania Army National Guard leadership from the 165th MP Battalion, the 55th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade command team, the 28th Infantry Division, and the Pennsylvania National Guard command group saw unit members off at the airport.

The 28th MP Company will complete additional training at Fort Bliss, Texas, before arriving at Guantanamo Bay and beginning their mission.