By Amy Phillips, Fort Hunter Ligget Public Affairs
| Fort Hunter Liggett Public Affairs Office | May 23, 2019
FORT HUNTER LIGGETT, Calif. - The 63rd Readiness Division and Fort Hunter Liggett are leading the way to increase Army Reserve membership in the Sgt. Audie Murphy Club (SAMC) be establishing the West Coast Chapter. They plan on hosting at least two boards annually at Fort Hunter Liggett and Parks Reserve Forces Training Area.
During the week of May 21, 2018, five Army Reserve Soldiers participated in the SAMC’s intensive exam process to prove their physical, mental, weapons, and leadership skills. Pictured is Sgt. 1st Class Stephanie Hendricks with the 11th Battalion, Army Reserve Careers Division with her sponsor Master Sgt. Hector Soto at the Fort Hunter Liggett weapons qualification range during the Sgt. Audie Murphy Club testing.
The SAMC is an elite Army organization of Soldiers that exemplify the Army Corps and community service. When a Soldier is inducted, he/she is given a medallation and induction certificate in a formal ceremony. (Photo by Amy Phillips)
Not everyone can join the elite Sgt. Audie Murphy Club (SAMC) but Sgt. 1st Class Stephanie Hendricks with the 11th Battalion, Army Reserve Careers Division (ARCD) based at Moffett Field, California, joined the ranks in September 2018.
“My Dad is in the Sgt. Audie Murphy Club and I remember him doing so much in the community…I want to be like him and also have a bigger platform to be able to connect Soldiers with the community,” said Hendricks.
It’s not a easy to join the SAMC, which is named after Staff Sgt. Audie Leon Murphy, a World War II hero and the highest decorated Soldier in American history. To be considered for the board, a noncommissioned officer (NCO) has to be nominated and pass four phases that test their physical, mental, weapons, and leadership skills.
It took Hendricks two tries and she said it wasn’t any easier the second time going through the board. Hendricks claims she had more anxiety knowing where she fell short the first time and trying to “nail it” the second time. “Never quit,” said Hendricks.
“When you hit a road block, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the end,” said Hendricks. “You have to keep pushing to reach your goals. It’s made me a better person, a better Soldier.”
Since being inducted in the SAMC, Hendricks focused on building the Sgt. Audie Murphy West Coast Chapter, which was established in 2015. The club is well-known and well-established within the Active Army ranks but still new to the Army Reserve. Hendricks sponsored a NCO for the March 2019 board and another one for the upcoming August board.
Hendricks has served in the Army Reserve for 19 years, and has been with the ARCD since 2008, managing the officer-warrant officer accessions program. The ARCD services all Army Reserve Soldiers and Individual Ready Reserve Soldiers in California and Nevada. She also supports Parks Reserve Forces Training Area by managing the photo lab several days out of the week.
She is an Active Guard Reserve Soldier and plans to continue doing what she does for as long as she can. She loves her job. “It’s about mentoring Soldiers and being able to see them through their accomplishments,” said Hendricks. “That is the most rewarding thing to me.”
Her father feels quite rewarded as well. "What I wanted most for my daughter was that she be able to excel confidently on her own terms, whatever they may be," said Charles Hendricks. “And if those terms included me as her father, I would have reaped what I had tried to sow.”
For more information on the SAMC, visit http://www.audiemurphy.com/samc.htm.