Farewell from Major General Donald Ryder.
Today, nearly 3,000 military police are deployed around the world. Since 11 September 2001, our military police men and women have served magnificently while forward stationed during multiple deployments in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Guantanamo Bay and while deployed in support of homeland defense. Although the work is demanding, our Soldiers and families face each challenge with a special courage and determination that make me proud to be a member of the Military Police Corps. I sincerely thank each of you for your service.
Your superb performance as military police, Department of the Army police, and civilian employees has expanded our role across the spectrum of conflict to include major combat operations, stability operations, law enforcement, and criminal investigations. In recognition of your contributions, we have increased the size of the Military Police Corps by more than 25 percent, redesigned our units to provide enhanced capabilities, converted table of distribution and allowance units to deployable organizations, and incorporated military police into every echelon of the Army's formations from brigade combat teams to theater Army. And, after more than 30 years, the Army has reinstated the position of the Provost Marshal General on the Army staff.
As I prepare to change command and relinquish the responsibilities of Provost Marshal General, I am confident that our leadership at every level will continue to serve our nation with the same resolve and dedication that Lisa and I have seen over the years. In the months and years that follow, the Military Police Corps will remain in our thoughts and prayers, as will our fallen Soldiers and their family members who have given the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our freedom. We wish you all Godspeed and best wishes.
Major General Ryder was commissioned in 1971 through the Army Reserve Officer Training Corps. Among his major duty assignments were commander, 463d Military Police Company, Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri; commander, 93d Military Police Battalion, V (U.S.) Corps, Frankfurt, Germany; commander, 418th Base Support Battalion, Frankfurt, Germany; commander, 14th Military Police Brigade, 21st Theater Army Area Command, Mannheim, Germany; deputy commanding general, 21st Theater Army Area Command, Mannheim, Germany; deputy commanding general, U.S. Army Chemical and Military Police Centers and Fort McClellan, Alabama; and commandant of the U.S. Army Military Police School, Fort McClellan, Alabama, and Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.
His awards and decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit with two oak leaf clusters, the Bronze Star, the Meritorious Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, the Army Commendation Medal with three oak leaf clusters, the Southwest Asia Service Medal with two campaign stars, the Armed Forces Service Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Medal.