Three Soldiers on stage
The outgoing first sergeant of Headquarters and Headquarters Company for the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command, 1st Sgt. Erika Vargas (right), prepares to pass the guidon with the unit’s colors to HHC Commander Capt. Jeremy Myles (center). Incoming HHC 1st Sgt. Michael Mills (right) stands ready to receive the guidon upon accepting his new role as senior NCO of the unit during a change of responsibility ceremony, held March 27 at Redstone, Arsenal, Ala. (Photo Credit: U.S. Army photo by Jeremy Coburn) VIEW ORIGINAL

The U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command hosted a change of responsibility ceremony for Headquarters and Headquarters Company, March 27 in the Bob Jones Auditorium on Redstone Arsenal, Alabama.

During the ceremony, 1st Sgt. Erika Vargas passed the guidon to 1st Sgt. Michael Mills, signifying his new role as the senior noncommissioned officer for HHC AMCOM. The first sergeant is responsible for instilling discipline and assisting the commander with daily unit operations. HHC AMCOM is responsible for all active-duty Soldiers on Redstone Arsenal.

Vargas held the role of HHC first sergeant for three years, joining the unit one month prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I started this crazy ride back in early 2020,” she said. “I was tracking about 18 units across the Arsenal when I first signed in and somehow, I ended up with 27 by the time I settled in.”

During her time at HHC, Vargas and her team processed more than 7,000 administrative and financial actions as well as more than 300 retirements, out processed and welcomed more than 400 Soldiers, and conducted Army Combat Fitness Tests for more than 700 Soldiers.

“HHC is a very small team, nevertheless, the past and present HHC members have worked endless hours to accomplish the mission,” she said. “When a Soldier’s administrative and financial needs are taken care of, it allows them to concentrate on their mission without worrying about their pay, leave or records.”

HHC Commander Capt. Jeremy Myles called Vargas the driving force behind HHC’s success. He thanked her for standing by his side during the tough decisions, for leading by example, as well as putting the needs of others before herself. He said he appreciates her leadership and her genuine care and concern for all Soldiers, civilians and contractors, and their families.

“You have made an impeccable impact on the unit and your contributions will not be forgotten,” Myles said. “You are leaving this company better than when you found it and you have set the standard for the future. Thank you for your leadership and tireless dedication.”

Mills, a native of Bay Shore, N.Y., comes to HHC from his previous assignment at Army Materiel Command. He thanked his family as well his fellow Soldiers who have helped him throughout his career.

To view photos from the ceremony, visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/amcompao/albums/72177720307109303