Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group One (EODGRU-1) held a change of command ceremony on board Naval Amphibious Base Coronado, Oct 16.
During the ceremony, Capt. Chris A. Merwin relieved Capt. Robert A. Baughman as commander of EODGRU-1.
Rear Adm. Frank Morneau, commander of Navy Expeditionary Combat Command and guest speaker for the ceremony, highlighted Baughman’s accomplishments while leading EODGRU-1.
“You institutionalized the continual leadership program for our entire community, both Officer and enlisted; you changed the way we do mine warfare, we cut the lines on the past and have now brought about the expeditionary MCM company; and you have been the biggest champion in the force for our family resiliency and our warriors, and I thank you for that,” Morneau said.
During Baughman’s tour, EODGRU-1 forces conducted 589 combat and direct action missions; rendered safe 464 improvised explosive devices (IED); and eliminated 35,610 lbs. of homemade explosives (HME) from the Afghanistan battlefield.
EODGRU-1 also successfully deployed four EOD and mobile diving and salvage unit battalion staffs; 23 mobile platoons; eight mobile diving and salvage companies; 11 units of action for Joint Prisoner of War and Accounting Command missions; forces in support of 38 exercises; and 78 EOD teams for U.S. Secret Service missions during Baughman’s tenure.
Baughman, a Norfolk, Virginia native, received his commission in 1990 through the U.S. Navy’s Officer Candidate School after earning a degree from the University of Maryland in geography and cartography. Baughman’s next assignment is Naval Mine and Anti-Submarine Warfare Command (NMAWC).
Merwin is a graduate of the University of South Carolina and received his commission through the Naval ROTC program in 1991.
U.S. Navy EOD is the world’s premier combat force for countering explosive hazards and conducting expeditionary diving and salvage.
Press Release, Image: US Navy