• Soldiers participate in the capabilities demonstration as part of the re-patching and uncasing of the colors ceremony for the 23rd Chemical Battalion, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, at Camp Stanley, South Korea, April 4, 2013. The demonstration highlights the abilities the unit has to support of Combatant Commanders or other governmental agencies in order to counter full-spectrum CBRNE threats.  (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Juan F. Jimenez, 1st ABCT PAO).

    23rd Chemical Battalion capabilities demonstration

    Soldiers participate in the capabilities demonstration as part of the re-patching and uncasing of the colors ceremony for the 23rd Chemical Battalion, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, at Camp Stanley, South Korea, April 4, 2013. The demonstration...

  • CAMP STANLEY, South Korea " A Soldier in a chemical reconnaissance team with the 501st Chemical Company conducting various sampling and confined space missions at SATSOP Development Park, Wash. and Dugway Proving Ground, Utah. All four CRTs were certified and validated by external evaluators. (Courtesy photo by U.S. Army)

    501st Chemical Company conducts sampling and confined space mission

    CAMP STANLEY, South Korea " A Soldier in a chemical reconnaissance team with the 501st Chemical Company conducting various sampling and confined space missions at SATSOP Development Park, Wash. and Dugway Proving Ground, Utah. All four CRTs were...

  • UIJEONGBU, South Korea " Soldiers with the 23rd Chemical Battalion, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, help to clean the streets of Uijeongbu and show some appreciation to the Families and business owners outside the gates of Camp Stanley April 17, 2013. The Soldiers spent the day picking up trash and enjoyed a Korean style barbeque in the afternoon.  (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Kyle Richardson, 1st ABCT PAO).

    23rd Chemical Battalion volunteers to clean up local area in Uijeongbu

    UIJEONGBU, South Korea " Soldiers with the 23rd Chemical Battalion, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, help to clean the streets of Uijeongbu and show some appreciation to the Families and business owners outside the gates of Camp...

  • CAMP STANLEY, South Korea " A Soldier accepts the new patch for 23rd Chemical Battalion, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, during a ceremony at Camp Stanley, South Korea, April 4, 2013. The battalion will provide nuclear, biological, chemical and radiological reconnaissance, equipment decontamination and consequence management assistance to support U.S. and Republic of Korea military forces. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Juan F. Jimenez, 1st ABCT PAO).

    23rd Chemical Battalion re-patching Ceremony

    CAMP STANLEY, South Korea " A Soldier accepts the new patch for 23rd Chemical Battalion, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, during a ceremony at Camp Stanley, South Korea, April 4, 2013. The battalion will provide nuclear, biological, chemical and...

CAMP STANLEY, South Korea -- The Soldiers in the 501st Chemical Company (Technical Escort), 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division showed expertise, fidelity, and commitment as well as surpassing the Army standards by winning the Maj. Gen. William L. Sibert Award for excellence in the chemical field.

The Sibert Award recognizes the most distinguished chemical units in the active Army, National Guard, and Army Reserves components. The 501st Chem. Co., made top honors throughout the entire active duty chemical corps.

The Sibert Award is granted to a chemical unit based on overall mission readiness, training, physical fitness, discipline, organizational skills and most importantly attention to details.

"The Sibert Award program takes a look at every metric that goes into being a company-sized element and compares that unit across the Army for a 12-month period," said Lt. Col. D. Sean Crockett, battalion commander for the 23rd Chemical Battalion.

During the first half of the review period, the 501st Chemical Co., fell under the 110th Chemical Battalion then realigned with the 23rd Chemical Battalion in Aug. 2012. Through meticulous record keeping, hard work and training above and beyond the standards, the unit proved worthy of the award.

"The 501st 'Vipers' have been through a lot in the last 12 months," said Crockett. "They conducted several real world missions back in the states. They re-flagged under the 23rd Chemical (Bn.) from the 110th Chemical Battalion. Then on top of meeting all training requirements, half of the 501st (Chemical Co.) deploy to Korea as the advance party to help prepare to receive the rest of the battalion. So at that point, you had the 'Vipers' running full spectrum operations on two continents."

Transitioning between battalions then a move to Korea, all on top of the real world missions and training was not an easy task for the unit. However, the Soldiers and leadership continued with business as usual.

"The move to Korea didn't really affect my team and myself," said Staff Sgt. Omarley Ritter, Bronx, N.Y. native and a team leader for 501st Chemical Co. "Everyone was pretty excited about coming over. Plus we knew that once we got to Korea there would be a lot more missions. We were in 'go mode' once the boots hit the ground."

Winning the Sibert Award has not affected the quantity of the missions or the attitudes of the Soldiers said Ritter. The 'Viper' Soldiers and leader enjoy the notoriety and recognition but are planning to continue their day to day mission. Ritter said they enjoy doing their jobs.

"We didn't win the award based on one particular event," said Maj. Rogelio Pineda, Monterey, Calif., commander for the 501st Chemical Co. "The Sibert Award is based off of Soldier's hard work. This award is the accomplishment of the Soldiers. Everything about their soldiering is reviewed and graded. I want my Soldiers to know this honor belongs to them. If at any point, any of my Soldiers have ever thought that their hard work has gone unnoticed, well it hasn't because this is their award."

While the 501st Chemical Co., has already been announced as the winner of the 2013 Sibert Award, the battalion commander, company commander, and guide-on will fly to Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., toward the end of June to receive the award at the regimental headquarters.

Page last updated Sat June 22nd, 2013 at 00:00