Spartan Soldier reflects on Black History Month
February 23, 2012
FORT STEWART, Ga. - Black History month serves as a time for all of us to reflect on the vital role in our history, as a nation and as a military service, that Black Americans have enriched our culture and society.
For one Spartan Soldier that reflection and honor to Black history is one that has driven her through her entire career. "Growing up in a small town in Alabama I remember everyone had two pictures hanging up in their houses, one of Jesus and the other Martin Luther King Jr.," said Maj. Annette Garrett, 26th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team Support Operations Officer and Lineville, Ala. Native.
To Maj. Garrett Black History Month means a time to reflect on what African Americans have done for society.
"I'm always proud to be who I am, but it is a time for others to understand and appreciate what Black Americans have attributed to our society," said Maj. Garrett.
"Being from a Black American and from the south you grow up with a great appreciation for Black History," said Maj. Garrett. "I was lucky to grow up in a town where it was about 60 percent Caucasian and 40 percent Black, but I was lucky to grow up without that friction of color. Really everyone just kind of grew up."
Major Garrett stated she was proud that the Army celebrates Black History month as a time to reflect on the accomplishments of Black Americans.
However, for Maj. Garrett growing up she never attended on joining the Army further than her time in the Army Reserves.
"I joined the Army Reserves to help pay for college while I attended the University of Auburn. After graduating I thought the Army wasn't so bad, so I'll do this a little longer and eventually received my masters as a sergeant. After that I attended Officer Candidate School and was commissioned in 1998. After that I realized this was really a career, so what started out as a two-year commitment turned into a 21-year career," Maj. Garrett said.
Major Garrett stated early on in her career she did not remember the Army celebrating Black History month, but over her 21-year career that the Army has progressed to celebrate every ones individuality and unity.
"For the Army to take the time to celebrate Black History Month it means a lot to me. Really everyone gets their month, but as a black woman I am a little partial," said Maj. Garrett jokingly. "It is great time to celebrate who you are and for others to appreciate the achievements of others, and as a woman it is great because you have two months to celebrate."