Spartan Commander leaves lasting impact on Soldiers
March 31, 2011
FORT STEWART, Ga. - It is hot - about 112 degrees in Mosul, Iraq. They are tired, and the coffee pot in the Spartan Tactical Operating Center is empty. Their tan t-shirts are beginning to stick just a little bit, and for some reason, their combat boots seem just a little extra heavy today.
It has been a long day; they rose at 5 a.m. However, the mission is not over, and he is relentless. Out he steps ... the eagle symbolizes his tenure but the determination on his face reflects the drive he and his Soldiers possess - remarkable and unmatched.
They jump to attention, waiting for the next order. "Spartan Soldiers, relax. There is more coffee on the way, and this day is close to an end. Today, because of your constant, diligent watch, you have saved hundreds of Soldiers' lives. We will all rest, we will all eat, we will keep our morale up, but most importantly, we will all go home," he said.
Spartan Commander, Col. Charles E. A. Sexton, will be leaving 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, physically, but hopes to have left behind certain morals and standards for Spartan Soldiers.
"I hope my Soldiers always remember that hard work, loyalty, discipline, and honesty is the key to success," he said. "For my leaders in the brigade: I challenge you to always remember taking care of Soldiers and their Families, as well as doing what's right, regardless of personal benefit, is what matters above all."
Staff Sergeant Anthony Ezerski, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd HBCT, 3rd ID, said the colonel's tactical and technical proficiency definitely had an impact on himself, as well as other Spartan Soldiers.
"Colonel Sexton's attention to detail is profound. I remember us being on a convoy in northern Iraq, and he spotted an unexploded ordinance on the side of the road after our first truck had already missed it," the staff sergeant said. "He's one of those leaders who still knows how to do all the skill level one soldiering, like take apart his weapon, even though his responsibilities are way above that and that speaks to Soldiers."
Lieutenant Colonel Michael D. Jason, 1st Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, 2nd HBCT, 3rd ID, said not only is the commander an excellent leader and example of a Soldier, his care for Soldiers and their Families is outstanding.
"I worked as his operations officer downrange, and I learned tons from Col. Sexton. He was extremely big on knowing your job as well as possible and taking care of Soldiers," said Lt. Col. Jason. "As hard as we trained and worked, he was still very Family-oriented; he gave Soldiers as much time as possible to spend with Families, and his model relationship with his spouse, Melody, definitely set an example for Soldiers to look up to."
Mrs. Melody Sexton, Col. Sexton's wife, said she and her husband will definitely miss the Spartan Brigade.
"We have gone tons of places with the Army," she said. "But we will always cherish the memories and bonds made here in Second Brigade."