CBRNE Command remembers one of their own
November 24, 2009
Family members, fellow Soldiers and civilians from the 20th Support Command (CBRNE) solemnly gathered at the Edgewood Chapel Nov. 5 to honor the life and service of Sgt. 1st Class Fernando Preciado.
Preciado was killed in a motorcycle accident Oct. 11 while riding his beloved Harley-Davidson motorcycle near Ontario, Calif., his hometown. He had recently relocated to California, assigned to the National Training Center at Fort Irwin.
From May 2007 to September 2009, Preciado was the CBRNE Command's G2 (Security/Intelligence Section) Watch Noncommissioned Officer in Charge and master intelligence analyst for the command on the Edgewood Area of Aberdeen Proving Ground.
"One of the things that struck me about Sergeant Preciado, who most people called "Sergeant P" because they couldn't pronounce his name, was that he always had his priorities right," said Lt. Col. James Baker, G2 chief, during his remarks at the service. "With Sergeant P, his Family always came first, then the Army. And anybody who knew him couldn't help but see the kind of Soldier he was - always there, always ready to do whatever was asked, with no mission too difficult."
Baker said a high point of Preciado's career was his service as the Intelligence NCOIC of Task Force McCall in Iraq. Preciado provided key intelligence threat analysis that helped secure sensitive weapons of mass destruction-related materials and eliminated a potential threat to U.S. and coalition forces assigned to Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The memorial ceremony included a commander's tribute by Capt. Norven Charles, the Headquarters and Headquarters Company commander; section leader remarks by Baker, and personal reflections by close friend and colleague Steven Sieranski.
Members of the command rendered final military honors, including a Last Roll Call and a 21-gun salute with seven riflemen firing three volleys each.
Sergeant Eric Tunkel, trumpeter from the U.S. Army Materiel Command Band, played Taps before members of the command paid their last respects to the helmet, weapon, dog tags and boots of their fallen brother in arms.
A slide show of personal Preciado images was presented before the service began.
Sieranski remembered Preciado as a man who had served his nation with honor and devotion.
"Sergeant First Class Preciado went above and beyond what was required of him as an NCO," Sieranski said. "No matter what happened, he always maintained a positive attitude.
"He used to wear a cap that had a glass on it that was half full. I truly believe that is how he viewed life. He was always so upbeat, so optimistic about what lies ahead," Sieranski said.
"He was looking forward to his assignment in California to be near his Family again," he added.
Directing his comments to Preciado's mother, Yolanda Rodriguez, and brother, Victor Preciado, who were in attendance, Baker said Preciado possessed a passion to exceed and was known for his selfless attitude.
"Sergeant First Class Preciado's greatest legacy was his love for his Family, his fellow Soldiers and his friends," Baker said.
Preciado was born in Ontario, Calif. He was a Marine for nearly 11 years before transitioning to the Army. His awards include the Army Commendation Medal (one oak leaf cluster), the Army Achievement Medal, Navy Achievement Medal; Meritorious Unit Commendation, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal Campaign Star, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Navy Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, and the Marksmanship Qualification Badge.
Preciado is survived by his parents, brother, sister and four children, Mae, 11, Nathan, 10, Adrianna, 7, and Isaac, 6.