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Marine commander fired from Leavenworth detachment

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(Video: Lt. Col. Howard Hall relinquishes command of 3rd Assault Amphibian Battalion to Lt. Col. William Blanchard in a change of command ceremony at Camp Del Mar, May 31, 2013.)

The commander of Marines assigned to the Army’s Fort Leavenworth in Kansas was fired last week, according to a statement from the Marine Corps Combat Development Command.

Col. William Blanchard was relieved of command by Brig. Gen. William Bowers, commander of the Marine Corps Education Command, on June 19 “due to a loss of trust and confidence in his ability to command,” according to the statement.

The Leavenworth detachment falls under Bowers’ command, which reports to the Combat Development Command located at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va.

Lt. Col. John Knutson, the detachment’s executive officer, has been temporarily assigned as the acting commanding officer.

The Combat Development Command declined to comment on whether there is an investigation of Blanchard and his firing. The command also did not comment on when Blanchard took command of the detachment and how many Marines he oversaw at the Army base.

Fort Leavenworth is located on 5,634 acres along the Missouri River, north of Kansas City, according to information provided by the base public affairs office. It’s home to about 3,700 active-duty servicemembers.

The Marine Corps Detachment at Fort Leavenworth provides leadership, administrative support, instruction and service-level representation for Marines assigned to organizations supporting the Joint Staff, the Army’s Combined Arms Center, the Army’s Command and General Staff College, and the Army Corrections Command located on base.

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