By Marcy Sanchez, WBAMC Public Affairs:
(El Paso, Texas, Feb.1, 2018)
Leaders inducted more than 50 newly promoted noncommissioned officers assigned to William Beaumont Army Medical Center and the 31st Combat Support Hospital into the celebrated U.S. Army Noncommissioned Officers Corps during a ceremony at Sage Hall here Jan. 24.
For more than 240 years, the NCO Corps has played an important role in the Army. Membership is reserved for enlisted Soldiers in the ranks of corporal and above and is a testament to the caliber and character of enlisted Soldiers.
“Sergeants, of all the NCO ranks, have the greatest impact on junior Soldiers,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Cheryl Greene, command sergeant major, 13th Expeditionary Sustainment Command. “It is the rank of sergeants that privates look to for example. The sergeant must be unquestionably competent to carry out the mission correctly.”
Since the formation of the Continental Army, leaders have charged the NCO with instilling discipline and order in a unit. The Army’s first Inspector General, Maj. Gen. Friedrich Von Steuben, listed the responsibilities and regulations governing the NCO ranks in the “Regulations for the Order and Discipline of the Troops of the United States.” Later, people knew it more commonly as the Army’s “Blue Book.”
“Being a noncommissioned officer is about giving back. It is about setting the standards, knowing and enforcing the standards. It is the hard right over the easy wrong,” Greene said.
In all, 54 Soldiers were inducted into the NCO Corps, receiving a warm welcome from Command Sgt. Maj. David Doubek, command sergeant major, 31st CSH, after passing under NCO sabers.
For Sgt. Nathan McPherson, a pharmacy technician with the 31st CSH, being a member of the corps is an altruistic act.
“It’s more for the Soldiers than it is for me, because I get the chance to be their leader,” McPherson said. “I’ve always had great NCOs to lead and (train) me; that’s why I’m here today. They stepped up and led me to replace them, so that’s what I want to do for my Soldiers.”
McPherson, who joined the Army in 2014, said he has had the support of his family since joining, which also helped him stay focused. His brother, a Soldier in the Army Reserve, also recently earned the promotion to sergeant, which motivated McPherson to keep pushing himself as a Soldier and now as an NCO.
“Sergeants have to prove to their Soldiers and their leaders that they can lead from the front and know their craft. You are now the enforcer of standards and discipline,” said Greene to the newly inducted NCOs.