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NEWS | March 18, 2024

Prototype guidon returns to Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, Army South

By Staff Sgt. Carlie Stonebraker U.S. Army South Public Affairs

U.S. Army South Soldiers, civilians, friends, and family gathered on March 7 as retired Col. Peter Malik, a former commander of Special Troops Battalion, U.S. Army South, returned a piece of history: the prototype guidon he designed years ago for the battalion in a gesture of respect and appreciation of his former battalion at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston.

“Col. Malik has just given you a piece of history,” said Lt. Col. Michelle Martinez, Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion commander, U.S. Army South. “The military is full of rich history and traditions and the symbolism of the unit guidon is of huge importance as it represents a unit and its commander, so we are very thankful that your donation will allow us to preserve some of our unit’s history and share that knowledge with future generations.”

Malik began his Army Reserves career in 1985 as a field artillery officer and went on to do more than 30 years, with three combat tours, finishing his career as a colonel before retiring in 2016.

The opportunity to design the guidon was given to him right before relinquishing command of the STB. So, he quickly came up with a design to pass on to the next commander. The guidon was a prototype, as the production of the battalion colors was a seven- to 10-month process after designing it.

Malik was excited yet emotional when returning this piece of history to the U.S. Army South, as he has held onto it for quite some time.

“Remember your roots, your history, and also remember those who work at every level in your organization,” Malik said. “It is part of your success and the future of our Army. May this flag always remind you that we are here to support each other, our southern nations, and the United States of America.”

The Army continues to reach significant milestones in its evolution as a transformative fighting force, and this ceremony exemplified that. The guidon will be hung proudly in the HHBN command suite, where it will be visible to all current and future Army South Soldiers.