By Staff Sgt. Alexander Burnett, 7th Sustainment BrigadeJune 6, 2012
FORT EUSTIS, Va. (June 6, 2012) -- Watercraft is a technology and skill set unique to only a few units throughout the United States Army. The Soldiers assigned to Army vessels are often called away on missions with little to no preparation time to support the Navy, Coast Guard, Army and civilian teams. Occasionally, these troops have a chance to highlight their career field.
Sgt. Maj. of the Army Raymond F. Chandler III visited Soldiers of the 7th Sustainment Brigade at 3rd Port, Fort Eustis, June 5.
Chandler was warmly greeted by Col. Lawrence Kominiak and Command Sgt. Maj. Tony Escalona, the 7th Sus. Bde. commander and command sergeant major, respectively, and they gave a brief explanation of what the brigade's mission entailed. They detailed the unique assets inherent to the brigade and immediately introduced him to one of the most interesting technologies assigned to the unit, watercraft.
During his tour of 3rd Port, Chandler received detailed explanations of several vessels capabilities, unique missions and deployment history. He also toured some of the vessels, donning a life-vest and exploring the various engine rooms, decks, bridges and galleys. He learned about the logistics support vessel, landing craft utility vessel, large tugboat, tugboat and warping tug.
"As he moves around to each vessel he will learn about their unique missions, their accolades, what each vessel is intended for, how long it has been in service and what the soldiers mission is on each ship," said Sgt. Juan Vivar, a coxswain on a warping tug assigned to the 331st Transportation Company, 10th Transportation Battalion, 7th Sus. Bde. "This is not just going to be a great visit for the Sergeant Major of the Army, but for the boating community because we will get to showcase our mission in the Army."
Before hearing about each vessel, Chandler took the time to greet and shake the hand of ever Soldier of every boat crew. He asked each warrior where they were from, how long they had served in the Army and why they joined. While walking through the ranks, he presented each service member with his coin.
"The Sergeant Major of the Army was very impressed and walked away with a better understanding of what these Soldiers do every day for the Army," said Escalona. "I know the Soldiers really appreciated him coming down here and recognizing them for their achievements and their contributions."