News & Events

News & Events

Marines honored at Mt. Soledad National Veterans Memorial, R3 Sponsors

27 May 2024 – R3 proudly sponsored the Mt Soledad National Veterans Memorial ceremony honoring the 3rd Battalion 5th Marines “Darkhorse” unit from the Battle of Sangin, Helmand Province, Afghanistan in 2010-11.  Sangin is considered to have been the bloodiest battleground in our war in Afghanistan with several brutal ambush and IED attacks.  R3 Senior EOD Instructor Andrew Barnes was a Marine EOD Team Leader in support of 3/5 at the time.  Pictured from left: Kevin Brown, Mark Zambon, Andrew Barnes, Mark Sanders. Barnes served as a Marine EOD Team Leader supporting 3/5 during the battle.Andrew Barnes and Mark Zambon recount the deployment with Major General Jason Morris, former Bn CO of 3/5, and in command at the time of the battle.





R3 Announces Appointment of Chris Merwin as President

R3 is excited to announce Chris Merwin’s appointment as President.   He joined R3 in April 2022 as an EOD Program Manager before assuming Director of Operations in 2023 where he oversaw 25+ contracts and 170 direct labor subject matter experts.   A former EOD Group Commodore, Chris now leads all efforts from capture to contract closure at R3 executed through our four regional directors.

Chris Merwin, President of R3

R3’s CEO, Mark Sanders, announced plans for the promotion and operational reorganization last month following approval from the Board of Directors.  “ Chris is a dynamic leader well versed in R3’s supported organizations across maritime expeditionary, EOD, diving, mine warfare and interagency support.  Helping lead an employee-owned company is a privilege as is the ability to continue serving these specialized military units following our years of active duty.  I’m excited for his contributions in this new role.”

R3 Welcomes Benjamin Stafford

CMC (Ret.) Ben Stafford (left) with CAPT (Ret.) Dean Muriano at Ben’s retirement ceremony

We are thrilled to welcome Benjamin Stafford to the R3 team. Ben recently retired from the United States Navy, culminating 30 years of service as a Command Master Chief and Master EOD Technician. He has extensive experience leading complex and diverse teams in high-stress environments, managing organizational-level programs, and advising and developing senior executives. Ben has a diverse background in numerous functional areas in EOD, Operational and Strategic Planning, project and program management, doctrine and policy development, and training delivery.

Beginning his Navy career as a Hull Maintenance Technician, serving on board the USS SIMON LAKE forward deployed to Italy, Ben screened for and later graduated from Naval School Explosive Ordnance Disposal (NAVSCOLEOD). From there, he would go on to serve in multiple leadership capacities at EODMUs ELEVEN, TWELVE, TWO, SIX, AND EIGHT, as well as performing foreign material acquisition duties at the Naval Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technology Division (NAVEODTECHDIV) and Arabic language and culture studies at Defense Language Institute. He finished his career as the Command Master Chief of NAVSCOLEOD.

In addition to multiple qualifications and awards, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Liberal Arts in Management. He graduated from the Joint Special Operations Forces Senior Enlisted Academy and Command Master Chief courses. He also earned certification as a Project Management Professional (PMP) and as a Registered Scrum Master and Scrum Product Owner.

Ben will join our Northwest Florida team, utilizing his extensive and recent EOD community and Naval Education and Training Command (NETC) experience to directly shape future EOD training as part of the Navy’s Ready Relevant Learning (RRL) process.  While still in uniform, Ben was directly involved in laying the foundation for EOD RRL.  The opportunity to keep Ben’s vast knowledge and experience in play is a huge win for both the Navy and R3.