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Quartermaster Corps welcomes CSM Eric Vidal who says he’s ‘thankful to serve’ as senior enlisted leader SEE PAGE 3

Fort Lee

SERVING THE COMMUNITY OF FORT LEE, VIRGINIA, SINCE 1941

February 7, 2019 | Vol. 79, No. 6

Building Warrior Skills Fort Lee partners team up to complete simulated-grenade training area project

SEE PAGE 5 POLICY CHANGE PERMITS MORE TIME OFF FOR NEWBORN CARE The Army has doubled the amount of parental leave available to fathers and other secondary care givers, and mothers will have more flexibility for infant needs

ANNUAL MOMENT OF REFLECTION Signup is underway for the installation’s prayer breakfast observance set for Feb. 22 at Lee Club

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EVENT MARKS HISTORY MONTH Lee’s annual AABHM program will feature co-founder of African ancestry research group SEE PAGE 6

LEE SOLDIER GETS ARMY ESPORTS GIG As part of a USAREC assignment, an Ordnance NCO will talk up military service among gamers SEE PAGE 9


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coMMentaRY | Valentine’S Day

From weird beginnings, celebration evolves into economic powerhouse

File Photo by Staff Sgt. Christine Jones

An Army culinary Soldier holds a tray of chicken nuggets shaped into a Valentine’s Day heart at Forward Operating Base Price, Afghanistan, on Feb. 14, 2012.

possible therapy. Another legend dating back to the 3rd century A.D., stems from a pair of executions ordered by Emperor Claudius II in different

Fort Lee

Commanding General ................... Maj. Gen. Rodney D. Fogg Garrison Commander ....................... Col. Hollie J. Martin Public Affairs Officer ............................. Stephen J. Baker Command Information/Managing Editor ...Patrick Buffett Senior Writer/Special Assignments .......... T. Anthony Bell Production/News Assistant Editor .................. Amy Perry Production Assistant............................... Ray Kozakewicz To reach the Traveller Staff, call (804) 734-7147.

The Fort Lee Traveller is an authorized publication for members of the DOD, printed by Gatehouse Media Virginia Holdings, Inc., a private firm in no way connected with the U.S. Government, under exclusive written contract with U.S. Army Garrison, Fort Lee, Virginia. Contents of the Fort Lee Traveller are not necessarily the official views of, or endorsed by, the U.S. Government or the Department of the Army. The editorial content of this publication is the responsibility of the U.S. Army Garrison, Fort Lee Public Affairs Office. The appearance of advertising in this publication, including inserts or supplements, does not constitute endorsement of the products or services advertised by the U.S. Army or Gatehouse Media Virginia Holdings, Inc. Everything advertised in this publication will be made available for purchase, use, or patronage without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation, or any other non-merit factor of the purchaser, user, or patron. If a violation or rejection of this equal opportunity policy by an advertiser is confirmed, the publisher will refuse to print advertising from that source until the violation has been corrected.

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This column is dedicated to our Team Lee battle buddies struggling with (ignoring, pretending to be oblivious to) Valentine’s Day and the expectation of purchasing a perfect gift for the special someone in their life. Few observances leave people wondering “How did mankind get into this predicament?” more than this one. Where is it written into law that every Feb. 14 gentlemen, ladies and googly eyed school kids have to profess their feelings for others? Is it all just a marketing ploy by retailers and restauranteurs hoping to grab a piece of the sales pie that produced a sweet $20.1 billion in 2018? Of course, it’s no surprise that today’s highly commercialized version of Valentine’s Day is a far cry from what historians have deduced about its dark origins. One account – offered by Noel Lenski, a University of Colorado historian, in a 2011 National Public Radio news interview – describes the ancient Roman “Feast of Lupercalia” and a courting ritual that involved animal sacrifice and willing women lining up to be whipped with pelts in order to become fertile. Hint: if sharing this factoid with a significant other, do not appear to be wistful, lest ye desire a lasting period of loneliness and

years but on the same date of Feb. 14. The victims were both named Valentine. In one alleged instance, the accused “man of the church” performed marriages in spite of the emperor’s ban against such unions because he believed single males without families made better soldiers. Hint: showing excitement while discussing wedlock bans and/or the unfavorable impact of married life on military careers could prove detrimental to long-term relationships. Catholic scholars offer a story about a priest named Valentine (later proclaimed as a saint) who was sentenced to death for attempting to help Christians escape harsh Roman prisons He is said to have fallen in love with a young girl – possibly his jailor’s daughter – who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, it is alleged he wrote her a letter confessing his feelings and signed “From your Valentine.” With heavy church influence in the 5th century, St. Valentine’s Day celebrations are said to have evolved from drunken and naked pagan rituals to still-tipsy yet tasteful festivals that honored spring renewal and the blossoming relationships of young couples destined for matrimony and making babies. Years later, English poet Geoffrey Chaucer and playwright William Shakespeare greatly

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romanticized the annual tradition and handmade paper cards with admissions of adoration became the token-of-choice in the Middle Ages. The migration of Valentine’s Day to the New World was inevitable (actually, it’s now celebrated in more than 20 countries). Americans can thank the industrial revolution and a company called Hallmark Cards of Kansas City, Mo., for churning out the first factory-produced greeting cards in 1913 – insert “first themed sales rack was set up a year earlier” joke here. With profits sure to be made, other companies soon joined the fray with everything from boxed chocolates to fresh-cut flowers, and the U.S. installment of the holiday was set in motion. Suffice to say, the modern version of Valentine’s Day does tend toward impression over expression. High-cost jewelry, reservations at the fanciest restaurant or other equally expensive testaments of love are expectations imposed by advertisers and cheeky individuals who make statements like, “You can’t put a price tag on love.” Certainly, there’s nothing wrong with going all out for your special someone, but it doesn’t have to go beyond what is economically manageable and personally meaningful. The history of this observance tells us one thing – there is no obligation to follow conventional Valentine’s Day traditions since there is no historical precedence for doing so. How anyone expresses their feelings is a choice of the heart, and the three simple words “I love you” may be the best gift of all.

T. Anthony Bell A Basic Officer Leader Course student takes aim with a simulated grenade during field training at the Fort Lee range complex in November. A project is well underway to lay out an area on post that will enhance this type of training. It’s another example of CASCOM’s efforts to fully develop initial entry training Soldiers so they’re ready for the operational Army. For more, see Page 5.


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Photos by Amy Perry

Command Sgt. Maj. Eric J. Vidal I takes the branch colors from Brig. Gen. Douglas M. McBride Jr., Quartermaster General, during a change of responsibility ceremony Jan. 30 in Mullins Auditorium. Vidal took over the QM Corps’ senior enlisted leader responsibilities from CSM Sean J. Rice, who is moving to a new assignment at Fort Bragg, N.C., where he will serve as the 3rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command CSM.

CSM Eric Vidal takes top enlisted spot for QM Corps T. Anthony Bell

Senior Writer/Special Projects

Command Sgt. Maj. Eric J. Vidal I assumed senior enlisted leadership responsibility for the Quartermaster Corps during a Jan. 30 ceremony in Mullins Auditorium here. The traditional passing of the branch colors was led by Brig. Gen. Douglas M. McBride Jr., Quartermaster General. He took possession of the flag from outgoing CSM Sean J. Rice and passed it to Vidal with congratulatory acknowledgements. During the ensuing remarks, McBride shared his thoughts about the professionalism of “one of the finest NCOs he knows,” directed at Rice. “For all of you who know CSM Rice, you understand he is the definition of standard-bearer,” McBride said. “He works closely with NCOs and junior Soldiers to define standards and further advance NCO training and management across the QM Corps and all sustainment organizations in the

Army. (He) provided energetic leadership to five training departments and over 35,000 Soldiers in initial training, ensuring they achieved technical and tactical proficiency. “CSM Rice, you have been a trusted advisor and a true leader for the Quartermaster Corps and across the sustainment community,” he continued. “Your reputation permeates throughout the corps. I anticipate nothing but continued success as you move to your next assignment as the command sergeant major of the 3rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command at Fort Bragg, N.C. Our loss is their gain.” The two years as the 13th corps CSM flew by, said Rice, and it was a wonderful experience. “It’s been an honor to share in this privilege and to lead and follow as I served in the footsteps of legendary NCOs, officers and warrant officers (many of whom are present) in this historic hall,” he said. “Looking back over my tenure as Quartermaster CSM, let me express how

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Command Sgt. Maj. Eric J. Vidal I, the 14th CSM of the Quartermaster Corps, speaks during the change of responsibility ceremony.

extremely humbling and appreciative it has been to serve with such professionals within this organization. Much has been accomplished. We have been involved in exceptional projects – credentialing, advancing civilian-military education, adding rigor to advanced individual training, leader development, talent management, and advancing our messaging and communication efforts through various social network means. “For all these things and more, I sincerely want to say thank you to the entire CASCOM (team),” Rice acknowledged. After his remarks on Rice, McBride focused on his new command battle buddy. “(Vidal) is indeed the right person at the right time to serve as the 14th CSM of the Quartermaster Corps,” he said. “He will excel because that’s what he does best. He’s an exceptional NCO, quartermaster and logistician. There is no doubt in my mind that CSM Vidal will continue to take this organization to new heights.” Vidal said it’s a great honor to be selected to serve the QM Corps team, and he couldn’t wait to get started. “Throughout my career, I have been thankful for all the opportunities the Army has provided for me and my family,” he said. “Whenever someone asks me for advice on getting to this level in the Army, I tell them to be grateful for what you have but never settle for less than you can be. You must share our success and stories to those who want to achieve more. When you come off the streets of the Bronx, it’s important that you share your story – not just for the inner-city kids, but for everyone who has a hard life.”


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Clinic Plans Patient Advisory Forum Kenner Army Health Clinic invites its past and present beneficiaries to provide input on ways to improve patient care and satisfaction during a Patient and Family Advisory Council forum set for Feb. 13, 4 p.m., in the facility’s first floor break room. The PFAC mission is to integrate the patient’s perspective into the Kenner problem resolution process. Council members are asked to become advocates for patient-centered health care at Fort Lee by sharing concerns, suggestions and complaints. For further details, contact Trudy Corbett, patient advocate, at 804-734-9512.

Kenner Announces Holiday Weekend Hours

Staff Sgt. Sara Welch

Chaplain Gregory Walker – a lieutenant colonel at that time – speaks during an Easter service at Kandahar Air Field, Afghanistan, in March 2013.

Fort Stewart’s senior command chaplain to speak at community prayer breakfast

Patrick Buffett

Managing Editor

Fort Lee’s 2019 National Prayer Breakfast observance is set for Friday, Feb. 22, 7:30 a.m., at the Lee Club on Battle Drive. The target audience for the event is military members and civilians who work on Fort Lee. Sign-up can be accomplished through any chaplain on post or at the Religious Support Office on the third floor of the garrison headquarters, corner of A Avenue and 34th Street. The RSO team is accepting $5 donations for the breakfast. The event’s agenda includes prelude music by a 392nd Army Band quintet, opening remarks by COL Hollie J. Martin, Fort Lee garrison commander and a buffet-style meal. “The National Prayer Breakfast is a great time to slow down from our hectic and challenging lives and be reminded of the importance of spiritual fitness and selflessly serving others, which is an aspect of our overall resilience,” observed Chaplain (Maj.) Michael

R. Keifman, CASCOM chaplain capability developer and a member of the organizing committee. “This event also provides an opportunity for Soldiers and Army Civilians to come together and celebrate God’s blessings through prayer and by listening to an inspiring message.” Each year, there are moments of the gathering when prayers are offered for the nation’s leaders, for deployed troops, for families of the fallen and others who make sacrifices for this country every day. It’s a “big-picture reminder,” said Keifman, of what “should be held in highest regard within our hearts and why, as a result of that sense of honor and commitment, we can overcome any adversity through faith and unified strength.” The program’s featured speaker is Chaplain (Col.) Gregory B. Walker, Senior Command Chaplain for the 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield, Ga. Over his military career of more than 25 years, the SEE prayer breakfast, page 12

Kenner Army Health Clinic and Mosier Consolidated Troop Medical Clinic 2 will be open with normal business hours Feb. 15 for the President’s Day weekend training holiday. Troop Medical Clinic 1 will be closed that day. Trainees needing medical care will be seen at TMC 2. All clinics and ancillary services will be closed in observance of President’s Day on Feb. 18. Normal operating hours and services will resume Feb. 19. To schedule appointments, call the Kenner appointment line at 1-866-533-5242. Active duty family members and retirees no longer require pre-authorization to visit an urgent care center. Active duty service members must request an authorization to visit an urgent care center after-hours or when the clinic is closed by calling the nurse advice line at 1-800-TRICARE and choosing option 1. For an emergency, dial 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.

ACS Program Ready to Assist with Relocation Military members and spouses with relocation orders to a new duty station, particularly abroad, are invited to attend an Army Community Service PCS/Overseas Briefing held the third Wednesday of the month, 9 a.m., in the Soldier Support Center, room 125, building 3400, 1401 B Ave. The next event is Feb. 20. Topics include shipping pets, private vehicles and household goods; obtaining passports; available American Red Cross services; legal considerations and more. For additional details, call 804-734-6752.

Contest Features Trip, Movie Premiere in Hollywood Army and Air Force Exchange Service shoppers can win a trip for four to the “Captain Marvel” movie premiere March 4 in Hollywood, Calif., through Feb. 15. The trip is valued at approximately $6,000 and includes airfare, hotel accommodations, tickets and more. To enter, visit shopmyexchange.com/sweepstakes. No purchase is necessary. The winner will be notified on or about Feb. 18.

CWF Accepting Award Nominations The Fort Lee Civilian Welfare Fund is seeking nominations for its next Outstanding Civilian Service Awards presentation. The deadline to nominate a post employee is March 5. The awards recognize civilians who display an exemplary work ethic and take the time to get involved in the community with volunteer service or other philanthropic efforts. Any Fort Lee DOD Civilian employee may be nominated by any member of the workforce. For nomination forms and details, email Caroline Williams at email@fortleecwf.com.

Fill Gym Bag Contest Ideal for Fitness Buffs Authorized shoppers at the Army and Air Force Exchange Service have a chance to be winners in two fitness-related sweepstakes through Feb. 18. In one contest, ten people will receive a $100 Exchange gift card in the Fill Your Gym Bag Sweepstakes. The second sweepstakes will award five winners a Schwinn 830 treadmill, which is valued at $799. To enter, visit shopmyexchange.com/sweepstakes. Winners will be notified at the end February.


ODS working grenade range project to bolster Soldiers’ basic field skills

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Army trainers here will soon have a dedicated area to teach and rehearse grenadetossing skills as part of the Combined Arms Support Command mission to hone the warfighting prowess of advanced individual training Soldiers so they are fully capable when they arrive at their first duty station. The practice grenade range is under construction at Training Area 18 along C Avenue, adjacent to the Regimental Community Center. The complex is roughly 80-percent complete and is expected to receive its first students in a few weeks, said Sgt. Maj. LaQuaine Bess, S3 SGM, 59th Ordnance Brigade. “This will be a great addition to the training we are currently conducting,” he said. “Reinforcement of combat skills is something that really supports commanders out in the operational force. They will receive Soldiers who are ready and deployable and able to become combat multipliers as soon as they arrive at their gaining units.” Consisting of a grenade familiarization range and qualification course, the new resource will provide reinforcement instruction for skills acquired in basic training, said Bess, and support the readiness initiatives of the Training and Doctrine Command. “The project was initiated by the Ordnance School based on the guidance of Gen. (Stephen J.) Townsend, (TRADOC commanding general),” he said, referring to Townsend’s

“warriorization” strategy. “It identifies the need for Soldiers to train on grenade ranges and potentially earn grenade qualification badges.” Three lanes with the capability to accommodate 20-30 Soldiers will comprise the familiarization course. It will feed student participants into the qualification course portion, which features seven lanes. The brigade is still working details on its ability to award grenade qualification badges, with the key factor being the limitations to simulated grenade usage only. No live grenades will be used at the range, Bess said. More than 3,000 Soldiers per year are expected to undergo grenade training at the new complex, Bess estimated. He also noted the training is not part of the brigade’s threeday culmination exercise, dubbed ODX, which occurs approximately two weeks before students graduate. Grenade training will instead be conducted over the course of varying training cycles based on availability. Plans for the grenade complex were made in conjunction with Range Control, Bess said. Construction began in November and required the clearing of overgrown brush. In addition, an aging, unused confidence course was removed to accommodate the new training facility. Most of the work is being performed by Ordnance personnel. The Ord. School is headquartered here but operates training sites at several locations around the country. It graduates roughly 140,000 AIT students annually.

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Dani Johnson, CASCOM Public Affairs Officer

VSU hosts troop night

A Fort Lee advanced individual training student enjoys some time on the court during the halftime break of a VSU Trojans versus Lincoln University Lions basketball game Saturday at the VSU Multipurpose Sports Center. The troops were invited to the game in conjunction with military appreciation night. The senior command representative in attendance was Lt. Col. Clarisse Scott, 266th Quartermaster Battalion commander, who thanked the military personnel for their service and the community for its support during opening ceremonies. VSU capped off the evening with an 85-75 win over the visiting team. It continued a 15game winning streak and added to a stellar season record off 19 wins and 3 losses in the Center Intercollegiate Athletic Association conference.


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Army offers more flexibility with new parental leave policy Gary Sheftick Army News Service

FORT MEADE, Md. – The Army has doubled the amount of parental leave available to fathers and other secondary caregivers of newborn infants with a policy that also provides more leave flexibility for mothers. Secretary of the Army Mark T. Esper signed a directive Jan. 23 that increases parental leave from 10-to 21-days for Soldiers who are designated secondary caregivers of infants. The new policy makes the Army’s parental leave comparable to that of other services and in compliance with the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act. Mothers will now be granted six weeks of convalescent leave directly after giving birth and can be granted another six weeks of leave as a primary caregiver to bond with their infant anytime up to a year after birth. “We want Soldiers and their families to take full advantage of this benefit,” said retired Col. Larry Lock, chief of

Sgt. Asa Bingham

Capt. Harold Rivard, 2-12th Infantry, greets his baby daughter and wife upon returning to Fort Carson, Colo., Nov. 17, after a nine-month deployment for Operation Resolute Support with the 2nd IBCT, 4th Inf. Div. Under the Army’s new parental leave policy, Soldiers like Rivard can now apply for 21 days of parental leave as a secondary caregiver or 42 days if designated as a primary caregiver.

Compensation and Entitlements, Army G-1. to get back in shape while it also takes care He said parental leave is a readiness issue of families. that ensures mothers have the time they need The new policy is retroactive to Dec. SEE Army parental leave, page 14

Lee AABHM observance to feature co-founder of African Ancestry Inc.

Dr. Gina Paige, co-founder and president of African Ancestry, Inc., will be the guest speaker for the installation’s annual AfricanAmerican/Black History Month Observance set for Feb. 22, 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., in the Lee Theater. Admission is free and all community members are invited. Headquartered in Washington, D.C, Paige’s organization was formed in 2003 and pioneered a new way of tracing African lineages using genetics. The company has helped over 500,000 individuals discover their African lineages including many wellknown leaders, dignitaries and celebrities. They include Oprah Winfrey, Spike

23, 2016 – the date the NDAA legislation was signed for fiscal 2017. In other words, Soldiers who took only 10 days of paternal leave over the past couple of years can apply to take an additional 11 days of “uncredited” leave as a secondary caregiver. An alternative would be to reinstate 11 days of annual leave if that time was spent with their infant. Eligible Soldiers need to complete a Department of the Army Form 4187 and submit it to their commanders for consideration regarding the retroactive parental leave. Fathers also can be designated as primary caregivers and granted six weeks or 42 days of parental leave, according to the new policy. However, only one parent can be designated as primary caregiver, Lock pointed out. If a mother needs to return to work and cannot take the six weeks of leave to care for an infant, then the father could be designated as primary caregiver, he said. However, if the mother has already taken 12 weeks of maternal leave, that option is not available. Until now, mothers could receive up to 12 weeks of maternity leave, which had to be taken immediately following childbirth. Now, only the six weeks of convalescent

Lee, Samuel L. Jackson, Maya Angelou, Condoleezza Rice and others. In addition, Paige has worked with historian and Harvard educator Henry Louis Gates Jr. on three PBS “Finding Your Roots” programs. She holds a degree in economics from Stanford University and an MBA from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business. The theme for the 2019 observance is “Black Migrations” – an expression that emphasizes the movement of people of African descent to new destinations and subsequently to new social realities. While inclusive of earlier times, this theme focuses

especially on the 20th century through today, according to the Association for the Study of African American Life and History. The event is being hosted by the 832nd Ordnance Battalion, CASCOM and the Fort Lee Equal Opportunity Office. The observance also will include musical performances from the 392nd Army Band and the Virginia State University Gospel Chorale, entertainment from Ordnance Soldiers, informational displays and more. For further details, contact Capt. Jelesa Anthony-Hall, Battalion S3/S2, 832nd Ord. Contributed Photo Bn., at 804-734-8780. Dr. Gina Paige, co-founder and president of – Staff Reports African Ancestry, Inc.


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Recognizing Civilians | Spotlight

Larry Watson

Hometown: Chattahoochee, Fla. Length of federal service: Retired in 2003 as a colonel in the Army. Has worked at Fort Lee for 19 years and in his current position for 11 years. Job title: Course director for the Logistics Assistance Program, Army Logistics University Job duties: “I make coordination with Army Material Command and all of the Life Cycle Management entities to ensure their personnel who are assigned to the program are up-to-date on policies, emerging doctrine and any new elements that need to be fed into the operational force that will assist them in achieving readiness. I also organize two courses – an operational one that gives the knowledge, skills and ability to logistics assistance representatives, and a senior manager course that indoctrinates new

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leaders into the competencies needed to lead those individuals.” What did you do in the military? “I was a quartermaster officer. I led petroleum operations in all of the major theaters, throughout CONUS from the East-toWest Coast, Korea, Germany, and I had a

culminating assignment in Italy. After that, I came to CASCOM where I served as a TRADOC system manager, building the Army from its analog systems into digital processes and applications.” What do you love most about your job? “Being able to make a difference between the very top where policy, procedures, guidance and emerging trends are being shaped to the worker levels where the application is taking place.” What do you consider your greatest achievement? “Being a good father. I have four children and three grandchildren.” Do you volunteer? “There are a lot of organizations in this area that support people, students and military – current and former. I’ve served as vice president of the Military Officers Association of America, and on its scholarship board through which hundreds of thousands of dollars have been given to children in military families. I’ve served as a leadership mentor for junior ROTC programs at schools in several surrounding counties

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and cities. I’m president of a motorcycle ministry that is about encouraging men to be men and not just stereotypical males. I also serve as an ombudsman for individuals being rehabilitated, helping them with writing, preparing resumes and life training. At Fort Lee, I’m a vice president of the federal employees’ union.” Why do you volunteer? “It’s needed. There’s a saying that goes something like ‘it is a true mentor who plants a seed in the heat of life that will grow a tree under which he may never enjoy the shade.’ That means, I see the need. I may not benefit from it personally, but someone else may benefit from the enduring lesson or value of what gets passed on” Were you surprised that you were nominated and earned one of the awards from the Civilian Welfare Fund for your volunteering? “I am a behind-the-scenes kind of guy. I like to say I’m in the intellectual witness protection program. I had someone SEE larry watson, page 15


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T. Anthony Bell

Instructors assigned to Captains Career Training Department, Logistics Leader College, Army Logistics University, pose with instructor certificates following a badge presentation ceremony Jan. 30 at Green Auditorium, Bunker Hall. The ceremony’s host, Col. James Godfrey, ALU commandant, recognized 15 instructors who fulfilled various requirements to earn the awards. Among the recipients, two were the first logistics officers to attain the Senior Army Instructor Badge. The remaining instructors earned the Basic Army Instructor Badge.

Army Logistics University officer first to pin badge among logisticians T. Anthony Bell

Senior Writer/Special Projects

An Army Logistics University instructor here has become the first captain in the logistics community to earn the Senior Army Instructor Badge. Capt. Travis H. Rogillio, assigned to the Captains Career Training Department, Logistics Leader College, reached the pinnacle of his distinctive achievement during a badge presentation ceremony Jan. 30 in Green Auditorium, Bunker Hall. He was the first of two CCTD instructors to earn the senior badge. Thirteen others, including one noncommissioned officer, attained basic instructor badges.

ALU Commandant Col. James Godfrey presented the awards and said afterward the instructors demonstrated stellar performance in order to earn the recognition. “I will tell you this is very well-deserved,” he said from the auditorium stage. “I know it’s a lot of hard work, but it’s well worth the effort from what I’ve seen in my opportunities to observe the classrooms.” Speaking directly to the recipients, Godfrey continued, “As you build the future -- logistics leadership starts here; sustainment leadership starts here – what you do will influence future generations. Believe it or not, they (students) will remember you.” Rogillio, an instructor for the past two years, downplayed his achievement, noting it

was not his intention to achieve a “first” but to pursue excellence. “At one time, I had a battalion commander whose big thing was ‘Be a master of your war-fighting trade,’” said the 20-year Soldier. “I’m an instructor, so I want to be the best I can possibly be in that capacity. That was the motivation for me to get this done.” To earn the SAIB, instructors must meet the requirements for the basic badge, and they must complete an additional 400 hours as a primary instructor. Furthermore, they must undergo evaluations and complete additional courses, said Maj. David Sanchez, course director. “One of the hardest things I had to do was take the Instruction Design Basic Course,”

said Rogillio, a former infantryman. “It was a very difficult to complete, but I did it. I also had to re-write a block of instruction.” The latter project was accomplished after Rogillio completed the Mortuary Affairs Officer Course. He used the newly instilled knowledge to rewrite an associated block of ALU instruction. That accomplishment also set him apart as the department’s only Mortuary Affairs-qualified instructor. While his time on the teaching platform has been a challenge, Rogillio noted, it has been critical to career progression. “I believe this is the best assignment I could have had to prepare me to be a major because of all the work (I had) to do on the side to be able to instruct,” he said. “It intensifies your focus on doctrine and forces you to know what you’re teaching. That makes students better but also makes me more professional.” Among the BAIB awardees, three individuals became the first Explosive Ordnance Disposal officers to earn the award. Small group instructor Capt. Scott Curtice said earning the badge and wearing it proudly should promote and inspire. “It’s a great opportunity to showcase the EOD officers here at the schoolhouse,” he said. “We have our own course for EOD students specifically, and it shows the work we’re doing to prepare those students for future commands and staff jobs.” Instructors are required to complete at least 80 hours of primary platform time to earn the BAIB among other requirements. The Master Army Instructor Badge is the highest of the three awards. It requires an additional 400 hours above the senior-level requirement, additional courses and other achievements. Army instructor badges were first awarded in 2014 to NCOs only. A regulation change last year allowed officers and warrant officers to earn the distinctions. Since late last year, CCTD has ramped up a campaign to push its 46 officers to pursue the badges, said Capt. Michael Maternick, CCTD small group leader. “This voluntary program is a way to encourage our Small Group Leaders to pursue excellence and continue to refine their instructor competencies,” he said.


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rSenior Writer/Special Projects s An Ordnance School Soldier and lifelong dvideo game enthusiast has accomplished the kimprobable. t Staff Sgt. Michael Showes, a wheeled yvehicle recovery instructor here, earned a coveted spot on the fledgling Army ESports mTeam in December after only two months of scompetitive experience. He was surprised, to say the least. “Yeah!” he exclaimed in reference to his equalifying tournament win Dec. 4. “I was ethinking, OK, we’ve got people from all over rthe world who love to play and fully engage wcompetitively as well … I figured I’d do swell, but I didn’t think I’d win.” ” The Army ESports Team is a Recruiting eCommand endeavor meant to establish econnections with prospective enlistees ethrough the emerging-yet-popular esports tcommunity and its competitive events. t “If we are going to be successful in recruiting, then we need to be where young epeople are – anwd they are operating in ethe digital world,” said Maj. Gen. Frank DMuth, commanding general for the Army kRecruiting Command. Thousands of currently serving Soldiers are competitive online gamers, Muth noted. t“Now we are giving them a chance to use otheir talents to help us relate to and connect with other young gamers. They will have the eability to start a dialogue about what it is like nto serve in our Army and see if those contacts lare interested in joining.” r The 35-year-old Showes, who goes by the username “Showmatic,” is an enthusiast dof the hand-to-hand combat game Tekken e7. He is among the first members of the tESports team, all of whom are specific game especialists. More than 6,500 hundred active nduty and Reserve Soldiers responded to a call ,for additional team members late last year. l The Army ESports Team is expected to number 30 by the summer. Those individuals owill supplement the work of Army recruiters. oTeam members will be committed to rUSAREC for three years, according to the command’s nomination instructions.

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Ord. School Soldier tapped for Army ESports team

T. Anthony Bell

Staff Sgt. Michael Showes, a wheeled vehicle recovery instructor assigned to the Ordnance School, earned a spot on the Army ESports Team after winning a qualification tournament Dec. 4. He will be among the 30-member team of gamer-Soldiers the Army is assembling to help with recruiting efforts. (BELOW) Staff Sgt. Michael Showes, right, poses with fellow Army ESports Team members and an unidentified game enthusiast during a recent exhibition event in San Antonio.

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A video game enthusiast most of his life, Showes has played Tekken on a leisurely basis for years. In September of last year, he decided to take the plunge into tournament play, competing in several competitions over the course of a few weeks. “I love the environment and energy there,” he said, noting the experiences allowed him to raise his game. “The more I went, the more I was motivated – you know, ‘What did I do wrong, so I can fix things the next time?’” Showes said he improved his competitive edge against top players by researching his opponents’ games online, studying their moves and habits. “I had some people shook,” he said, chuckling while describing his performance in the Army tournament and trying his best to downplay the achievement. It all paid off. He went undefeated in the PlayStation 4-formatted AET qualifier that included more than 100 entrants. He obviously has the skills to compete at higher levels, but that is a fact lost amongst his Generation Z students who are incredulous to someone in uniform getting paid to play video games, said Showes. “Believe it or not, most of those I tell don’t think (the AET) exists. They assume I’m joking; or think the Army was considering it but it hasn’t happened yet,” he said. “Nonethess, it’s a full-blown program that’s off to a good start.” On Jan. 18, the AET participated with Army recruiters at the PAX South gaming event in San Antonio. Another gaming event is scheduled for March, said Showes. In the meantime, Showes said he is still competing independently and has a few tournaments lined up. His wife, Sinyoung Park, his supervisors and command team all have been supportive of his pursuits. “Who wouldn’t want to pursue their passions or hobbies for fun, get paid to do it and have the support of the Army to do it?” questioned Showes. “I’m really blessed to be a part of it.” The Washington Post reported last year the esports industry would generate more than $300 million in revenue for 2018.


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CYS focuses on healthier food for community kids

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Amy Perry

Production/News Assistant Editor

Most Team Lee members are well aware of efforts to improve the healthy food options around the installation, but that push doesn’t stop with the post’s adult population. Edwin E. Ezell, the nutritionist for Child and Youth Services on Fort Lee, has been on the job for four years, and he said improving the quality of food offered to the children of the Fort Lee community has been the priority during his tenure. “I make sure kids get nutritious foods throughout the day,” he said. “Our program really helps offer healthier items and new foods to the community.” During the August 2018 worldwide Army Youth Leadership Forum – an annual IMCOM-hosted event that allows military dependents to voice ideas and concerns to senior leaders – the attendees recognized food options and programs as one of the top three factors impacting their quality of life. That sparked a command-wide invitation for CYS activities to consider where they could make improvements to their nutritional programs.

Amy Perry

Ester Guerrero, a Child and Youth Services lead program assistant, helps Peyton Tyler scoop vegetable soup for lunch in the toddler class at the Sisisky Child Development Center.

The Fort Lee Youth Center staff can cite a number of ways they encourage healthy dietary habits, including cooking demonstrations and a gardening program. Improving the health for all in the CYS community is at the forefront of Ezell’s mind when he works his program strategy. Having healthier options has been a hot topic for several years. “About two years ago, the military CYS changed to focus-

ing on more nutritious menus, meaning we are bringing in more whole grains and organic items,” he said. “We have been introducing new items for the kids to consume.” The program has been beneficial because the menus are designed to account for many common allergies children have, so it reduces the amount of substitutions the staff has to make. “The menus are well-received, although there was a bit of a rocky start when we transitioned over,” Ezell said. “Some of the parents questioned it when we moved from some of the more traditional items they’ve seen, but the program has been successful in offering healthier food. Now that they see how it’s working out, most of the parents are on board.” Instead of canned fruits and vegetables, the cooks use fresh items. Since there is only room to store about five days of meals within the centers, the fresh items make sense, said Ezell. Even dining facilities for the Soldiers have offered healthier options, he said, and it just makes sense that it would carry over to their children. “We want to help the kids get started eating well early, so it follows them later in life,” Ezell emphasized. Weekly menus are placed in every CYS center. Any parent who has questions may contact Ezell at 804-765-3853. Those who would like to read more about the youth forum discussion can find the article at www.army.mil/article/216011/ army_teen_panel_brings_changes_to_food_programs.


New Civilian Welfare Fund initiative begins with Wintergreen Resort trip Carrie Williams CWF Secretary

The Fort Lee Civilian Welfare Fund is partnering with the Family and MWR Directorate here to offer free or partially paid trips/events for DOD Civilian employees. The first CWF Experience is a March 9 day trip to Wintergreen Resort on the eastern slopes of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains where participants can enjoy snowboarding, skiing, tubing and hospitality at the facility’s lodge. CWF will pay for the lift ticket and equipment rental, a $60 value, for up to 30 DOD Civilians. Free round trip transportation is provided by FMWR for the first 10 eligible individuals who register. All others will have to provide their own transportation. To sign up, contact Outdoor Recreation at 804-765-2212, and mention that you are a DOD Civilian. Outdoor Rec’s hours are Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., and Saturday, 8:30

a.m. - Noon. The CWF mission is to support and enhance the quality of life of DOD workers here. If this first CWF experience proves popular with civilians, the organization will plan to offer more with a goal of appealing to varied interests including sports, outdoor adventure, arts and entertainment and more. Other popular CWF offerings include the biannual free chicken sandwich lunch drivethrough – the next one is scheduled for April 11 – and the Fort Lee Outstanding Civilian Service Awards – Spring nominations can be sent to email@fortleecwf.com through March 5. The POC for the latter program is CWF Secretary Carrie Williams at caroline.williams@deca.mil. The organization’s volunteer board hopes the new CWF Experience will become a signature event that demonstrates the group’s goal of enriching the lives of hard-working civilians through new and interesting activities.

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Dani Johnson, CASCOM Public Affairs Officer

Moss takes HHC CASCOM post

First Sgt. Carlandra Moss accepts the Headquarters and Headquarters Company, CASCOM, guidon from Capt. Erika Beverly, the unit’s commander, during a Feb. 1 ceremony at Clark Fitness Center. She replaced 1st. Sgt. Shanita Henderson who is moving on to a new assignment at Fort Polk, La. Moss was previously the first sergeant for Victor Company, 262nd Quartermaster Battalion.


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Kenner Connection | Prescription Safety

Citing overuse of antibiotics, clinic clarifies proper usage Lesley Atkinson

Kenner Army Health Clinic PAO

Antibiotics are not the cure for every illness and tend to be frequently over-prescribed, which can lead to bacterial resistance and potential problems when the medication is truly needed. That precautionary message from the care providers at Kenner Army Health Clinic is directed at beneficiaries who often assume that antibiotics is the remedy for most injuries and illnesses. “Contrary to popular belief, the drug is not appropriate for viruses such as colds, flu, bronchitis, sore throats and most ear infections,” said Nurse Practitioner Velva Bennett from the Family Medicine Clinic. “What I am observing in my practice is that patients expect antibiotics to be prescribed for them whenever they are sick,” she observed. “They do not realize this drug is only effective for bacterial infections, and does not work on viruses.” It’s true that both viruses and bacteria can cause illness, noted Kenner staffers, which underscores the need to go to your doctor for an exam and testing when symptoms persist and/ or intensify despite the use of over-the-counter medications. If the illness is virus-related, the health care team will likely opt for treatment that is meant to lessen the discomfort while letting the body’s immune system fight the germs. Since antibiotics are not effective against viruses, they should not be prescribed. A known side-effect of antibiotic over-usage is the growth of resistant bacteria. At least 2 million people develop this condition each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and at least 23,000 die as a result.

This happens because germs develop ways to protect themselves against antibiotics. Each time the germ is exposed to an antibiotic, it can mutate as a way to survive. If this occurs, the next time an antibiotic is used, it may not work. “Patients need antibiotics for bacterial infections only,” Bennett reiterated. “This would include strep throat, urinary tract infections or other infections caused by specific bacteria. Lab work is often needed to confirm bacterial infection.” Many viruses can cause colored mucus, said Bennett. Yellow, green or thick mucus in children does not always indicate a bacterial sinus infection. “Symptomatic management of these diagnoses is appropriate,” she noted. “It is important to seek medical care (that Metro Creative will likely include a blood test or throat culture) to determine whether the illness is viral or bacterial.” Antibiotic resistance is one of the most serious public health problems in the United States, according to the CDC. It threatens to return us to a time when simple infections were often fatal. “It is important for our patients to understand the appropriate use of antibiotics,” Bennett said. “We use extreme care in how we prescribe these drugs so that we protect individual patients from harm as well as combat the larger issue of antibiotic resistance.” An online CDC statement reads, “No one can completely avoid the risk of resistant infections, but some people are at greater risk than others (for example, those with chronic illnesses). If antibiotics lose their effectiveness, then we lose the ability to treat infections and control public health threats.”

prayer breakfast, continued from page 4

Colonel has ministered combat troops during deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. He has served as FORSCOM’s deputy command chaplain at Fort Bragg, N.C., and TRADOC’s command chaplain in the Initial Military Training and Chief of Personnel Management Chaplain’s Office. Walker hails from Arnold, Mo. His civilian education includes a Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministries from the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary in Springfield, Mo., where he was initially commissioned as an Army Reserve second lieutenant. His military education includes the Command and General Staff College, the Chaplain Resource Manager Course, and the Chaplain Lieutenant Colonel and Colonel Course. Walker has earned the Master Parachutist Badge, the Air Assault Badge and the German Parachutist Badge. “We are excited to have this fieldexperienced and decorated officer speaking

at our event,” Keifman acknowledged. “Chaplain Walker’s message will be spiritually uplifting and morally motivating, and those in attendance will walk away from this event appreciative of the things that make our military community great.” The history of the National Prayer Breakfast dates back to 1953 when President Dwight D. Eisenhower threw his support behind the annual congressional prayer breakfast – an unofficial backroom gathering of Washington politicians and businessmen that had started many years earlier. The publicity of presidential participation inspired community leaders across the country to host similar events, and the tradition has grown to include military installations around the world. Every prayer breakfast event over the past 66 years has shared the same intent – taking a knee and remembering how faith and thankfulness tends to bring people together and create a more positive outlook. For more information about the 2019 Fort Lee observance, call 804-734-6494.


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Wellbeats Spin Class | Ongoing

The garrison commander hosts a Wellbeats Spin Class Tuesdays and Thursdays, 6:30 p.m., at the Strength Performance Center, building 6008, 16th Street. All authorized patrons are encouraged to attend the free highenergy sessions. The next two dates are Feb. 12 and 14. Wellbeats is not a traditional cycling class. It is an on-demand fitness provider that delivers motivating instruction, workout plans and fitness assessments to users any time. Over 200 virtual classes are available for every age, interest and fitness level. For details, call 804-734-5979.

‘Steel Magnolias’ at Lee Theater | Feb. 8-17

“Steel Magnolias,” the third installment of the Lee Playhouse Theater Group platinum season, continues Feb. 8-18 at the Lee Theater, Mahone Avenue. Performances are set for Feb. 8, 9, 15 and 16 at 8 p.m., and Feb. 10 and 17 at 3 p.m. All shows are open to the public. The dramatic comedy focuses on the friendship of six southern women who talk, gossip, needle and harangue each other. Tickets are $15 for adults and $7 for youths. For information, contact the box office at 804-734-6629.

Youth Center Valentine Dance | Feb. 9

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White Gloves, Combat Boots Class | Feb. 21

L ocal A ctivities

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on the latest trends in cosmetics and skin CYS Parents Night Out | Feb. 16 care, demonstrations, a beauty clinic, games, Parents can take a night off while children, giveaways, coupons and more. ages 6 weeks - 12 years old, participate in ageFor further details, call 804-861-5970. appropriate development activities Feb 16, 6-10 p.m., at the Battle Child Development Center, building 10622, Sisisky Blvd. Follow the Drinking Gourd | The cost is $25 per child. Registration is Feb. 9 required by Feb. 6. A free Black History Month production, For details, call 804-734-2933 or 734-2958. “Follow the Drinking Gourd,” is set for Feb. 9, 4:30-5:30 p.m., at the Virginia Living Lee Club Sweethearts Dinner | Museum, 524 J. Clyde Morris Blvd., Newport Feb. 16 News. The Lee Club is offering a Sweethearts The planetarium show is an inspiring Dinner Feb. 16, 6:30-10 p.m., in building tale of one African-American family’s 9009, Battle Drive. desperate flight to freedom and how they used A dinner for two features a menu of beef constellations to guide the way. Admission is bourguignon, boneless Chicken Dijon, red free to the show with the museum entry fee. skin mashed potatoes, French green beans and Additional showings are scheduled throughout more. There also will be music, dancing and a the coming weeks. photo booth on site. The cost is $50 per couFor additional details, visit www.thevlm.org ple. Paid reservations are required by Feb. 12. or call 757-595-1900. For details, call 804-734-7547 or 734-7541.

Read-2-Rover at Library | Feb. 12

The Family and MWR Fort Lee Community Library will offer a Read-2-Rover activity Feb. 12, 5:30-6:30 p.m., in the Bunker Hall Café, Quarters Road, Army Logistics University campus. The free program includes reading for, or showing picture books to, certified therapy dogs. Registration is requested but not required. The activity is held the second Tuesday of each month, and it is open to all ages. For details, call 804-765-8095.

Community youths, ages 11-18, are invited to the “Love Ya Lots” Valentine Dance Feb. 9, 7-10 p.m., at the Youth Center, building 10619, Yorktown Drive. The event will include refreshments, music and dancing. The cost is $3 for members and $5 for guests. Attendees must either be registered with Parent Central Services or be ACS ‘Baby Basics’ | Feb. 13 a sponsored guest who is registered with PCS. A free class – “Baby Basics,” presented For details, call 804-734-2870 or 734-2871. by the Army Community Service Family Advocacy Program – is set for Feb. 13, 1 p.m., Exchange Valentine Mixer | at ACS, building 1231, Mahone Avenue. The session will cover bathing, diapering, Feb. 9 The Fort Lee Exchange will hold a special soothing, breastfeeding and other newborn event – the In Love with Makeup Valentine care. This also is an ideal opportunity to learn Mixer – Feb. 9, noon - 2 p.m., at the main store more about the support services available to first-time parents. Registration is requested. on A Avenue. For more information, call 804-734-6381. The celebration will include information

Military personnel, family members and civilian employees are invited to the ACS Army Family Team Building White Gloves and Company Boots Class Feb. 21, 5-8 p.m., at ACS, building 9023, 1231 Mahone Ave. Enrollment is free. AFTB will provide practical and experiential learning activities on customs, courtesies and protocols that take place at military social functions and events. There will be special emphasis on holiday ball attire and receiving lines. Registration is required by Feb. 19 For details, call 804-734-7979.

Library MakerSpace Activity | Feb. 22

The Fort Lee Community Library has scheduled its next MakerSpace program for Feb. 22, 5 p.m., in Bunker Hall Cafe, Army Logistics University campus. Those interested should arrive as close to the starting time as possible in order to complete the project before the event is over. MakerSpace is free and open to all ages. Participants can use tools, techniques and ‘I Have a Dream’ Performance | hands-on learning with the goal of inspiring and nurturing their interest in science, Feb. 18 The Virginia Repertory Theatre presents technology, engineering, art and math. For more information, call 804-765-8095. a dramatization of the life and times of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in a program entitled “I Have a Dream” Feb. 18, 6-7:30 p.m., at Chili Open (Golf) Scramble | the North Courthouse Road Library, 325 Feb. 23 The Chili Open Scramble is set for Feb. 23, 10 Courthouse Road, Chesterfield County. The free Black History Month event is for all a.m., at the Cardinal Golf Club. The two-person ages. For details, visit library.chesterfield.gov. team competition will have a shotgun start. The entry fee is $30 for members and $45 for ‘Anything Goes’ Auditions | all others. The cost includes golf, a cart, chili Feb. 18-19 for lunch and more. The registration fee must The Theater Company at Fort Lee will hold be paid by Feb. 21. It is open to all players. auditions for “Anything Goes” Feb. 18-19, 7 For details, call 804-734-2899. p.m., at the Lee Theater, Mahone Ave. Director Frank Foster is seeking women ‘A Sharecropper’s Life’ | Feb. 23 and men for a variety of principal, secondary James McKnight Jr. and Sahara Bowser and ensemble roles. Those auditioning should will share the story of Willie Holliday Sr. in prepare a song (accompanist provided), bring a special program entitled “My Story of a sheet music and be prepared for movement in- Sharecropper’s Life” Feb. 23 1-2:30 p.m., cluding Jazz and tap dancing. Readings will be at the Chester Library, 11800 Centre St. from the script. No performers are paid. Re- Registration is required. hearsals will begin immediately after casting The free event is part of Black History for a production run of May 17 - June 2. Month events scheduled throughout the For details, call 804-734-6629 or email county. For details, call 804-751-CCPL or info@leeplayhouse.com. visit library.chesterfield.gov.

For more installation and outside the gate events and activities, visit our online calendar at www.fortleetraveller.com/calendar


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Nurses celebrate 118th birthday

Contributed Photo

Contributed Photo

Members of the Army Nurse Corps serving at Kenner Army Health Clinic pose for a commemorative photo during a Feb. 1 celebration marking the 118th birthday of their profession. The theme of this year’s observance, “Anywhere…Anytime…Always Ready,” emphasizes the No. 1 priority of ensuring readiness of nursing teams to provide care whenever or wherever it’s needed. In lieu of a guest speaker, each Kenner Army Nurse – among them were active duty and reserve Soldiers and military retirees – presented photos and stories to reflect on their past and present and vision for their future. “Ever since the establishment of the corps, nurses continue to serve and to take care of Soldiers,” commented Lt. Col Tameka Bowser, deputy commander of nursing who also has been a member of the corps since 1998. “Along with showcasing our nurses today, we appreciate the previously serving nurses among us every day at Kenner and (other partner) facilities. (Today’s photo presentation) gives us a glimpse of who we were before we became Kenner staff.”

ARMy PAReNTAL LeAVe, continued from page 6 leave needs to be taken following discharge from the hospital. The second six weeks of primary caregiver leave can be taken anytime up to a year from giving birth, but must be taken in one block. In the case of retroactive primary caregiver leave, it can be taken up to 18 months from a birth, a policy decision that provides Soldiers more flexibility, Lock said. The new directive applies to Soldiers on active duty, including those performing Active Guard and Reserve or full-time National Guard duty for a period in excess

of 12 months. Summing up the new policy, Lock said the Military Parental Leave Program now offers three separate types of parental leave: maternity convalescent leave, primary caregiver leave and secondary caregiver leave. Mothers who decide to be secondary caregivers are eligible for the convalescent leave and the 21 days for a total of up to nine weeks. Parents who adopt also are eligible for the primary or secondary caregiver leave. The new policy is explained in Army Directive 2019-05, which is in effect until an updated Army Regulation 600-8-10 is issued.

Students rehearse field skills

A squad leader with Charlie Company, 832nd Ordnance Battalion, navigates her team through wooded terrain, prepared at any second for enemy contact, during a Jan. 29 war-fighting exercise here. Field training events serve as the culminating pre-graduation requirement for all advanced individual training courses taught at the Army Ord. School. It is an opportunity for young Soldiers to rehearse the warrior tasks and battle drills learned since day one of basic training, and understand what it means to be a professional logistician supporting the war-fighter in austere combat environments. The range of ODX (Ordnance Exercise) training reinforcement lanes include react to indirect and direct fire, complete movement to contact, react to an ambush, employ individually assigned weapons, treat casualties and radio a MEDEVAC request.


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LARRy WATSON, continued from page 7

asking me about the different volunteer stuff because they knew me as a minister and Sunday school teacher and they said ‘don’t you think you should be recognized?’ I told them I don’t do it for recognition, I do it because I enjoy it and it doesn’t interrupt my hobbies, which are watching Jeopardy and sleeping. I gave them a rundown and they used it for the submission.” Define what you mean by intellectual witness protection? “I’m not one of those O-6s you see labeling their walls so everyone recognizes their authority. I like being ordinary. It lets me be a regular person because when you start attaching titles to people, it starts to build invisible barriers not created by yourself, but by people’s blanket expectations of what the title is. I would

rather be considered as my who and not my what.” Where would you most like to live? “In my hometown. I’m headed back that way. I’ve bought 6.8 acres of land. It’s on the very outskirts of town. The closest fire hydrant is over a mile away, but I don’t care about that. It’s a nice piece of land. That’s going to be my retirement. I don’t see myself as static, but I’ve always been anchored to my hometown.” Do you have any pet peeves? “People looking for an argument and not a conversation. I don’t like arguments. I have a very strong belief base, but I don’t argue.” Which historical figure do you appreciate or look to for guidance? “Truth be told, it’s people who impacted my life personally. I can look to historical figures like Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr. and others, but when I seek

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comfort for getting through things, I look to my mother and older brother. My brother has passed. He was in the military. I idolized him. When I was by myself at a younger age and struggling through life’s decision path, I was kind of like Robin in thinking what would my brother do and how would it reflect on my mother? They were the two guiding posts.” What is your greatest extravagance? “Motorcycle riding and Jeopardy. I don’t talk to my grandchildren between 7:25-8:05 p.m. so I can put my mind into Jeopardy and then tell (my Amazon) Alexa ‘Let’s Play Jeopardy’ and respond to the six questions she gives.” What do you expect from your leaders? “Honesty and courage. Honesty because it lets me know how I have to perform within the organization. Don’t give me the impression the ship is going to float when it is taking on too much water. Beyond that, they

must have the courage to look at me and tell me if I’m performing right or wrong.” What is something people would be surprised to know about you? “That I’m a poet and romantic.” What are your future aspirations? “I would like to use my talents for the betterment of the world. In today’s environment, you meet (people) who have given up and think it won’t be any better. They lose hope or they just don’t care. I would like to be somewhere in between to restore the hope and get individuals to see the strength in themselves. A lot of individuals are content with ‘it’s never going to get better, it’s always been like this.’ I always say that everything is impossible until somebody does it. Be that somebody who makes the impossible ordinary.” – Compiled by Amy Perry

Reach more than 10,000 active duty military, civil service employees, retirees, their spouses and the civilian community.

DeADLINe Reader & Display: Thursday 4:00pm (week prior) CONTACT: Susan Irgens

susanlou.irgens@gmail.com

757-477-7104


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Profile for The Progress-Index

Fort Lee Traveller | Feb. 7, 2019  

Fort Lee Traveller | Feb. 7, 2019