General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital leaders hosted an induction ceremony for 11 newly promoted noncommissioned officers July 16 at Lincoln Hall Auditorium.
The event was intended to instill pride and display the importance of what it means to be an NCO, said GLWACH Command Sgt. Maj. John Castillo.
“We have 11 noncommissioned officers who are now ready to officially assume the mantle of leadership and lead another generation of Soldiers,” Castillo said. “Today’s ceremony serves as a rite of passage for them and affords us the opportunity as their leaders and their teammates to properly support them as they navigate this new path.”
Cpl. Azeez Oyekanmi, an Optical Laboratory Specialist at the General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital where the lab fabricates between 76,000 to 80,000 eyeglasses per year for trainees and Tricare beneficiaries around the Fort Leonard Wood area, was an inductee in the ceremony. Originally from Nigeria, he said his road has been long to get to this point, but he has wanted to be a leader since childhood. In fact, Oyekanmi was recently selected into the Army’s Green-to-Gold program, and he will soon depart his unit to attend college and study optometry.
“I can contribute to this country,” he said. “It is not about being in control. It is about helping other people. You have to help the people behind you.”
Castillo spoke of servant leadership and charged the newest GLWACH NCOs with helping their subordinates while leading them.
“Inductees, I charge each and every one of you to live the NCO creed – to remember that your team and your people and their families are the heart and soul of our Army,” he said.