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Winn Army Community Hospital commander relieved of command
Patrick Ahearne

Col. Patrick Ahearne was relieved of his command of Winn Army Community Hospital on Fort Stewart last month following the results of an investigation, according to a May 2 news release from Regional Health Command-Atlantic (Provisional), which is headquartered on Fort Belvoir, Virginia.

The release says that Ahearne used “poor judgment” in exercising his command authority. He was temporarily suspended April 19. 

The investigation did not find any criminal behavior. The relief of the command is a command action as a result of the investigation, according to the release.

The interim commander, Col. Joseph K. “JK” Weaver, will continue to serve in that role until a new commander is selected. He also is the commander of Tuttle Army Health Clinic on Hunter Army Airfield, but a Tuttle news release issued Tuesday announced that he will be replaced during a change-of-command ceremony at noon Wednesday by Lt. Col. Michael Tarpey inside the Hunter Club.

“This matter did not have an adverse impact on patient care,” the Regional Health Command-Atlantic news release says of Ahearne's being relieved of command, “and the excellent health care and services that our patients have come to expect will continue. The Army is committed to providing the best medical care to our soldiers, retirees and their families.”

The Bryan County News learned of the May 2 news release after a reporter inquired on Ahearne’s status after receiving the Tuttle change-of-command announcement Tuesday. 

Correspondent Lewis Levine contributed to this report.

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