The Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment (HHD), 709th Military Police Battalion, has served with honor and distinction in Europe for more than sixty years. Activated at Camp Niantic, Connecticut, on April 9, 1942, the detachment trained for immediate service in World War II. The unit was tasked in early 1943 to guard German Prisoners of War shipped from North Africa to U.S. ports and to escort prisoners from these ports to internment facilities. Upon receiving orders, the detachment and battalion landed on Omaha Beach, Normandy, and on August 29, 1944, the battalion entered Paris. In October 1945, the detachment moved to Frankfurt, Germany, assuming Military Police duties in another major city devastated by war.
In more recent history, the 709th Military Police Battalion played a major part in contingencies across the globe. During Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, the battalion played an important role in securing rail cars and convoys designated for ports of embarkation while also providing continuous law enforcement and personnel security missions for communities within Germany. In 1991, the battalion deployed to Northern Iraq in support of Operation Provide Comfort. In December 1995, the detachment deployed to Croatia in support of Operation Joint Endeavor. In early January 1996, HHD crossed the Sava River as part of the lines of the communication's opening force, preparing the way for eventual entrance of Task Force Eagle units in Bosnia-Herzegovina. In 1995, HHD moved to Hanau, Germany.
In April 2002, HHD and one company deployed to Kosovo in support of Task Force Falcon and the Multinational Brigade East. HHD and one company deployed to Iraq in March 2003 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom I. In the fall of 2005, the unit deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 05-07. In June 2007, HHD moved to its current location in Grafenwoehr, Germany.
As they have for the past seventy years, the 709th Military Police Battalion continues to provide law enforcement and force protection to our service members and their families. The Warrior Battalion takes pride in its service to our Nation as embodied in its motto: SECURITAS COPIARUM – "Guardians of the Troops"
The colors green and yellow are for the Military Police. The fleur-de-lis and galley, taken from the arms of the city of Paris, have a two-fold meaning as charges. Together, they indicate service in the area around Paris; individually, the fleur-de-lis represents service in Northern France and the galley symbolizes the early assignment of the organization: escorting prisoners from North Africa. The two wavy bars represent two trips in this capacity.
The Latin motto, Securitas Copiarum, translates to: Guardians of the Troops.