The Hanau town patrol was the most active of the area, we had large numbers of troops from 1AD, 3ID, V Corps & 1AD Artillery, Corps Engineers, and a number of other ash & trash type units that liked to drink heavy and party hardy. There was plenty of stick time (as the occasion called for) on payday weekends. The usual>Post, Camp and Station duties. The 127th was also the "Reaction" force for V Corps as well. So from a 1SG point of view it was the pits; and from an Ops Sgt view it was hell. We would supply the man power to the PMO and for whatever tasking that would come from V Corps PMO. Once the troop left the company on a mission, we lost control of them until they were released. Sothe "Chain of Command" was hard for the troop to understand.
As for tasking,they could be everything from providing security details for high profile visitors (such as the Pope) or an atomic warhead escort from the Ammo Dump at Mannhiem to the Perching Missile battery out side of Hanau. It always seemed that when V Corps got something hot, they tasked it down to the 127th. I don't know if you are familiar with REFORGER or not. Reforger was a FTX that involved a number of NATO countries, and they would war game it along the East German/Chek borders every year. Troops would come in from the States, and other NATO countries to "show the force" to the Russians. The 127th would have a part in each Reforger. The 709th MP Bn would have an AO about the size of West Virginia, and the 127th would provide "real life" police support to the area and also assume a number of security missions as well - SMLM control (the Russians would have "spy" types that would attempt to interdict the various convoys moving throughout the AO, we have to chase them out of the AO); TOC security, as well as the TCP/Convoy control, TA Investigations, and the usual PO'd German who got ran off the road by a M60A1 tank during the war games. And we had our own semi annual FTX's and weapons qualifications to stay proficient in our military skills as well.
As I said earlier, the standards that you and the initial group of NCO's set for the Company have carried it through long after you guys may have forgotten. You asked about the "Battle Rings". The 127th earned 3 while in Vietnam. The rings are attached to the guidon, much like streamers are affixed to the Battalion Colors. They were for an action that occurred at Qui Nhon harbor; another was for Humanitarian Action; and the last one was for some other action that the 127th was involved again in port security. I think they were both regarding sapper attacks on the dock facility. You would know more about that then I would. I just filled out the request form and sent it into DA. When they arrived, we had a Company formation, to include all the street patrols, except the Patrol Supervisor. The 709th Bn XO (Major Grossman) came down and assisted in the presentation. Each ring was placed on the Guidon pole as the Order was read relating to that particular action. It was very impressive, and the espirite of the Company remained high. When the 127th MP Company would march in Change of Command or similar ceremonies, I made sure that our "Battle" Guidon was used. Our was the only Company in the Battalion that showed its "colors" during those events! In 1SG calls I would be asked "What are those shiny things on your Guidon?", and as I explained that they were for action in Vietnam, the other MP Companies would shut up and sit back! The Battalion Commander used to like to show us off too, I think because it was always the 127th that was the Battalion Color Company for the reviews and parades. I kept a spare Guidon for daily use.
Well, I hope this has been of interest to you. I have a tendency to run off the head about this sort of thing. I am very proud of my time with the 127th and of being a Military Policeman. Of my 30 years of service, line MP duty remains some of the best times of that period. Chuck McKee