YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea — Lt. Col. Valrica Marshall-Quinones, commander of the 19th Military Police Battalion (Criminal Investigation Division), turned over command Thursday to Lt. Col. Jan Apo at a ceremony on Yongsan Garrison, South Korea.
“As I look out across the formation today, I’m saddened as I know this is the last time I will see many of you … ,” Marshall-Quinones said tearfully. “It is also a sad reminder that my time as a commander has ended.”
She said she sat in awe Wednesday night at a traditional farewell from her battalion at which the detachment commanders reflected on her accomplishments.
A mentor had told her “being good” wasn’t something that she could do by herself, she said.
“That part of the equation has more to do with those you surround yourself with than your individual abilities,” said Marshall-Quinones.
“If there has ever been a moment in my life where this has proven so true, it would be now. I am surrounded by an enormous pool of professionals.”
She also wished the incoming commander “as much enjoyment and reward over the next two years as I’ve enjoyed during my tenure.”
Apo told the soldiers that when she first was assigned to the battalion 10 years ago, she never imagined she one day would return to assume command.
“I am truly humbled by this opportunity and extremely excited to have returned to Korea,” she said.
Marshall-Quinones is moving to Fort Lewis, Wash., where she will work as deputy brigade commander of the 42nd Military Police Brigade.