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Second Lieutenant Rayneiqua Edwards, 101st Airborne Division Sustainment Brigade, hugs Ron Bonnin, a Vietnam veteran and member of the Pleiku Military Police Association. The members of the association developed bonds with their active duty guides throughout the duration of the visit to Fort Campbell, Ky.

Soldiers from 716th Military Police Battalion Soldiers recently led a guided tour for MP veterans of the Pleiku Military Police Association. 

The visiting MP veterans all served in Bravo Co., 504th MP Battalion, in Pleiku, Vietnam, at various times during the Vietnam War.

During the tour the group visited the Brig. Gen. Don. F. Pratt Memorial Museum, had lunch at the at the Rakkasan dining facility and concluded the visit with a briefing from Command Sgt. Maj. William Shoaf, senior enlisted adviser of the 716th MPs. 

The visiting MP veterans enjoyed a demonstration and display of modern military law enforcement patrol vehicles and combat vehicles, and conversed with active-duty MPs. 

“It’s truly wonderful to see the young men and women who are carrying on after us” Ron Bonnin said. “You wonder when you leave who’s going to be carrying the baton. It’s nice to see the quality of the equipment and a similar mission, it’s just different equipment and different ways of completing the same job.” 

Bonnin served in the Army as an MP for three years, two of which he served in Vietnam, per his request.

“A couple of the members expressed they went through basic training here,” 2nd Lt. Rayneiqua Edwards said. “And some of them were even stationed here.”

Edwards is an operations officer for the 716th MPs and was the main lead of the tour along with Pfc. Kamarin Poole. 

The experience was memorable for Edwards and Poole, who also expressed the veterans’ Edwards and Poole expressed the veterans’ departure was emotional because after spending the day with the members of the group they felt like Family. 

Members of the Pleiku Military Police Association travel to various Army installations annually to tour with that post’s MPs to share their history and involvement in the Vietnam War. 

“Being able to talk to young Soldiers about their mission and the way they complete it, it makes us all very proud,” Bonnin said. “To serve in the military is one of the most honorable things you get to do as a human being in America, it gives you a broader view of what it’s like to be an American.” 

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