NCOs run for esprit de corps, talk change
June 20, 2013
FORT SILL, Okla.-- The Fires Center of Excellence and Fort Sill command sergeant major hosted a postwide noncommissioned officers' June 13 here.
The event was held the day before the Army's 238th birthday.
"I try to do one every quarter to bring the Soldiers together," said Command Sgt. Maj. Dwight Morrisey, FCoE CSM. "It's about cohesion and being a part of the team; that's what it's all about."
The legions of NCOs departed from McNair Hall and chanted cadences while passing familiar areas on post such as the Patriot's Club en route to the "training area" of the post.
After the run, things took a serious turn as Morrisey talked about what may be considered the No. 1 congressional- and military-related issue all military branches are trying to eradicate sexual assault.
The command sergeant major rallied the NCO corps reminding them of how important it is for them to champion the call to fight against sexual assault and harassment.
"The noncommissioned officer is the key element in the process of getting that fixed," he said. "If you bring in the noncommissioned officers and get them involved, I'm telling you, it will get fixed!"
Morrisey relayed a true story with the group commonly referred to as the "Backbone of the Army," which was recently shared with him and other military leaders at the 2013 Sexual Assault Summit in Andrews Air Force Base, Washington D.C.
The senior enlisted adviser to Maj. Gen. Mark McDonald, FCoE and Fort Sill commanding general, told the story of a private who was dealing with a sexual assault issue one weekend.
When the Soldier's first sergeant was called, he did not want to meet the Soldier and help her because it was Saturday.
Once the senior NCO arrived at her location, he was mad that he had to be there.
Morrisey reminded the NCOs standing in the formation that Soldiers are continually in the profession of arms, and NCOs take care of Soldiers at all times.
"When you accept that responsibility of first sergeant or platoon sergeant, guess what 24/7, that's it," he said.
He also reminded them that the Army is undergoing changes as it is opening doors for women Soldiers to qualify with combat-arms military occupational specialties, which were previously only open to men.
He further iterated how those changes affect the Fort Sill community as many of its MOSs are adapting to the change.
Morrisey said a few female Soldiers have already graduated from the multiple launch rocket system crewmember MOS and the MLRS operations/fire direction specialist MOS schools here.
"If you're in the Army for as long as I have been, you're going to see a whole lot of changes, he said. "When I came in the Army folks were drinking at lunch time and you'd get cigarettes in your MREs."
Morrisey echoed Gen. Raymond Odinero, Army chief of staff, who said, "If you don't want to be a part of this change get out of the Army!"