Eighth Army top enlisted leader visits team 19

by Sgt. 1st Class Vincent Abril
U.S. Army

USAG-DAEGU - Eighth United States Army senior enlisted advisor, Command Sgt. Maj. Richard E. Merritt, took time to visit and address senior enlisted leaders of the 19th Expeditionary Sustainment Command over breakfast August 29 at the Camp Walker's Evergreen Community Club here.

In a large dining area, leaders broke bread with one another as Merritt addressed Soldiers on a variety of topics concerning leadership, readiness for Soldiers and families, current trends on building and transformation, and also educated senior noncommissioned officers on the military history of Korea.

Merritt's remarks also leaned heavily towards the importance of troop leading procedures and leader presence and engagement. Merritt asked all Staff Sergeants recently selected for promotion to Sgt. 1st Class to stand up and be recognized and offered his advice for the future senior leaders.

"Be the leader that you want to be led by, be that person, be that leader," said Merritt. "Be there, be seen, be heard, be relevant, make a difference where you are, and be the friction point, you make a difference with your presence."

Leaders in attendance were reminded of their special charge as noncommissioned officers.

"We do several things in the army, we fight wars, and if we're not fighting a war, we are preparing for a war and we are training for war, that's what we do, that's our whole life, our whole job," said Merritt. "Be their news, be their advisor, be their marriage counselor, be their financial advisor, be their spiritual advisors," he said in reference to leaders knowing and caring for their Soldiers.

After serving up advice on several topics and expressing his concepts of leadership, Merritt welcomed Command Sgt. Maj. Maurice V. Chaplin to the team in his closing remarks. Chaplin recently accepted responsibility for the 19th ESC as its senior enlisted advisor in a change of responsibility ceremony held a few weeks back. Upon completion of Merritt's visit, he went on to visit other Soldiers representing units across area IV.

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