The Presidents Day Holiday is a day to remember and honor the men and women who led and helped shape our country. While it is a day to recognize the achievements and contributions of two of this country's greatest presidents and an opportunity for a well earned long weekend for TRADOC Soldiers, civilians and Family members, it also represents a period of increased risk as people travel or participate in other recreational activities.

My goal remains no loss of life at any time. I am convinced commanders and leaders will make the difference during this long weekend with a show of genuine personal commitment and concern. Talk with your personnel, encourage the use of the "buddy system," and ensure they incorporate risk management into their plans, both on and off-duty.

Privately owned vehicle accidents continue as the leading cause of accidental fatalities for TRADOC and the Army, but do not lose sight of other hazards that await the unprepared or unwary. Emphasize pedestrian safety, discuss the hazards of excessive alcohol consumption, and include domestic violence and suicide prevention in your safety briefings.

Before we begin the long weekend, I want you to review your accident prevention efforts and involve our junior leadership in accident prevention initiatives. We must do everything within our power to increase the safety awareness of our Soldiers, but we must also identify those Soldiers who exhibit high-risk behavior and intervene as required.

Your personal example and the involvement of your junior leaders will make the difference. We can and must do better! Our commitment will make the difference.

General, U.S. Army
Commanding General
U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command