FORT RILEY, Kan. — Sgt. Maj. of the Army Michael A. Grinston visited Fort Riley, Kansas on Mar. 22 and 23, 2022.
Over the course of the two days, Grinston participated in several activities across the installation. On the first day, Grinston spoke at a town hall held at the Victory Chapel on post and was involved with a media engagement and formal dinner later that evening.
Grinston addressed questions from concerned spouses and family members regarding deployment extensions, the conditions the deployed soldiers face and the return of their loved ones.
Almost 4,000 1st Infantry Division Soldiers have deployed to Europe in support of Atlantic Resolve which aims to support NATO allies and European partners. While Army units often take part in scheduled rotations in Europe, this particular deployment is focused on providing support to NATO allies, with a goal of deterring Russian aggression, while also remaining prepared to support a range of other requirements in the region.
Recently 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team who has been deployed to Europe since last summer had their mission extended. This town hall hosted by the sergeant major allowed the families of those deployed soldiers to address their concerns to the Army’s top senior enlisted advisor.
During his opening remarks at the town hall, Grinston spoke on what he felt was the most important thing on a deployment. “The key is coming back, doesn’t matter how long you are there, what matters is you coming back,” Grinston said. After his remarks, the Soldiers, spouses and Families were given time to ask questions of the sergeant major.
“One of the reasons I am here is to just say thank you on behalf of the Secretary of the Army and the Chief of Staff of the Army,” Grinston said. “Thank you for supporting your soldiers.”
Grinston is working with the Secretary of the Army, the Office of the Secretary of Defense and other advisors to determine entitlements and resources due to Soldiers and families, given the unexpected timing of the deployments.
On the second day, Grinston conducted physical training with the 1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, of which he used to be part of. A small competition was held within Charlie company where the sergeant major competed against and alongside others in the unit.
Afterward Grinston personally recognized eight soldiers who had been chosen by their leadership.
Later Grinston announced the newest version of the Army Combat Fitness Test via Twitter which replaced the leg-tuck with the plank. Grinston is slated to hold a town hall to answer Soldier’s questions about the newest ACFT.