Sergeant Major of the Army shares thoughts about Belvoir
August 25, 2011
The installation received a special visit from the Sergeant Major of the Army Aug. 17.
Sergeant Major of the Army Raymond F. Chandler III toured the new Fort Belvoir Community Hospital and the Warrior Transition Unit Complex.
Chandler called his visit fantastic.
"You don't necessarily think of Fort Belvoir as other, larger-name bases ... but, this is a huge installation with a huge amount of growth," Chandler said.
The SMA was here a few months ago visiting with Wounded Warriors, but didn't have time to see the new facilities on post, according to DeWitt Health Care Network Command Sgt. Maj. Mark Dennis. His latest visit allowed him to see the progress on the buildings and talk to Belvoir Soldiers.
"It was fantastic," Dennis said. "I thought the SMA was extremely impressed."
Chandler called the hospital unbelievable. He said the equipment and design of the facility make it very suitable for healing.
"It's awe-inspiring. That's the best way that I can describe it," Chandler said.
He also found the new Warriors Transition Unit Complex impressive. He said the Soldiers' barracks made him think back to his early days in the Army when his living quarters were smaller in space and had "floors that I think were purposely designed so that you couldn't keep them clean."
Chandler said the living facilities the Army can now provide Soldiers with are amazing.
The SMA said the best part of his day was the time he was able to spend with Belvoir Soldiers.
Wounded Warriors shared their concerns and praises of the Army with the SMA. Chandler said he enjoyed the dialogue and looked forward to sharing what he learned with leaders at the Pentagon.
Chandler said the Army has made great strides in how it tends to Wounded Warriors.
"We got work to do. There's always room for improvement, but we've come a really long way," the Sergeant Major said.
He also shared his thoughts on the BRAC renovations, stating the consolidation of offices will allow for better service, which will ultimately better serve the country.
Chandler estimated that this was his third or fourth time he's visited the installation.
He tries to visit every few months to talk to Soldiers and see the installation's development progress.
He's looking forward to seeing more "great things" from Belvoir in the future.
Chandler, who was sworn in as the 14th The Sergeant Major of the Army March 1, oversees all noncommissioned officers and serves as the senior enlisted adviser and consultant to the Chief of Staff of the Army.
Fort Belvoir Garrison Command Sgt. Maj. Gabriel Berhane and Dennis escorted Chandler through the facilities, along with additional Belvoir Soldiers.