By Staff Sgt. Christopher Forecki, 1st Battalion, 1st Air Defense Artillery Regiment, 94th Army Air and Missile Defense CommandApril 20, 2016
KADENA AIR BASE, Okinawa, Japan -- The Soldiers of the "Snake Eyes" Battalion - 1st Battalion, 1st Air Defense Artillery Regiment, 94th Army Air and Missile Defense Command were honored by a visit from Sgt. Maj. of the Army Daniel A. Dailey, the 15th sergeant major of the Army, to Kadena Air Base on Monday, April 5, 2016. The visit by Dailey was part of his continuing tour of the Pacific region. The visit consisted of an open forum discussion between Dailey and Soldiers on Okinawa, followed by a demonstration of Patriot missile reload operations by Battery D, 1-1 ADA.
At the Marshall Dining Facility, Soldiers had the opportunity to hear Dailey's top priorities, which centered on readiness, mainly medical profiles and physical fitness. He began the conversation by introducing himself with a brief biography. He then listened as each Soldier introduced themselves. It seemed he had something in common with each one of them.
"He was really down to earth and approachable. He is current with the times and relates well with today's Soldiers. It was a unique experience that I won't forget," said Spc. Nicholas Ceccolini, a Delta Battery early warning systems operator from Marlton, New Jersey.
After the introductions, Daily held a question-and-answer session. Two of the questions asked were on the new one-year service completion requirement for Soldiers to begin using tuition assistance and another on the tape test for measuring body composition. At the end of the discussion, Dailey took time to give each Soldier a handshake and a "selfie" as he departed. Some were even lucky enough to receive a coin.
Soldiers had positive impressions of the Sgt. Maj. of the Army.
"I liked him as an SMA, very charismatic and I liked the way he talked; he was very approachable and knowledgeable," explained Spc. Hazel Manalang, the 1-1 ADA communications section (S-6) information management officer from Mangilao, Guam.
After his lunch with the Soldiers, Dailey departed for Delta Battery's tactical site where Soldiers were conducting Patriot missile reload operations. Immediately upon exiting his vehicle, Dailey received a warm welcome by an Okinawa rainstorm. Of course, the rain did not deter the sergeant major of the Army or Delta Battery from moving forward.
The sergeant major of the Army was escorted by Sgt. 1st Class Ayinde Waverly, a Delta Battery platoon sergeant from Henderson, North Carolina, to observe missile reload followed by Delta Battery Soldiers briefing the capabilities of their equipment.
Dailey motivated the Soldiers with words of encouragement and made it clear that their job in the Pacific had great importance. He even mentioned he has heard about the unit having the best reload crews in Pacific Command, which was echoed by Command Sgt. Maj. Maurice Chaplin, the 10th Support Group (Regional) command sergeant major.
It was not all work related though. Dailey asked Soldiers about their personal experiences on Okinawa and listened to each Soldier. Next, he met the battalion's first sergeants and some of 1-1 ADA's top performers. Dailey ended his tour of Delta Battery and once again gave the Soldiers a chance for a "selfie" and a handshake.
"He is a young and lively SMA that has a genuine care for Soldiers. I think, for him, the most enjoyable part of his visit was meeting the Soldiers and giving out coins. He never stopped smiling," said Waverly.