By Pfc. Elizabeth Hackbarth
U.S. Army Central
U.S. Army Central's Army Reserve Engagement Cell (AREC) hosted a mass re-enlistment here in celebration of the Army Reserve's 113th birthday April 23 that featured personal virtual remarks from Lt. Gen. Jody J. Daniels, chief of Army Reserve and commanding general, U.S. Army Reserve Command.
Daniels stated the name of each re-enlisting Soldier and shared a few words of encouragement and praise. She also talked about the overall important role the Army's Reserve force plays in the nation's readiness and ability to accomplish missions like the ones these Soldiers currently perform in Kuwait.
“I can’t think of a better way to commemorate the Army Reserve’s 113th birthday than with a re-enlistment ceremony,” said Daniels. “Thank you for your service and commitment to re-enlist in the Army Reserve.”
During the ceremony, Chief Warrant Officer 3 Nicholas Proctor, AREC"s host for the event, played the National Anthem on the coronet, and 13 Soldiers then swore the oath of enlistment together. They all expressed different reasons for having joined the Army Reserve.
“I was a cashier back at a Food Lion in Virginia,” said Sgt. 1st Class Reginald Lewis, the operations supervisor for the 310th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary). “I saw a sign on the door that said you could make ‘x’ amount of dollars in a weekend. I said, ‘Hey, why not give it a shot.’ So, I called. Sure enough, it was a recruiter.”
Lewis continued, “Seventeen years [ago] if you would’ve told me that I would be here in the Army Reserve, I would have told you you were crazy. But I’m here. I’ve enjoyed my 17 years. And I look forward to going 17 more if possible.”
Spc. Chrinita Mead, a transportation management coordinator for 1st Theater Sustainment Command, said she joined because her brother was in the Army.
“I was like, ‘If he can do it, I can do it,’” said Mead.
Mead said she is now re-enlisting because she wants to become a sergeant.
Following the oath of enlistment, Proctor once again played the coronet, this time performing “The Army Song.”
To conclude the celebration, Mead, the youngest re-enlistee, and Sgt. 1st Class Christina Simpson, the senior supply sergeant for the 310th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), the oldest re-enlistee, joined together to cut the cake.
“Today makes me think of all my brothers and sisters who have served before me [and] the sacrifices they’ve made being away from family,” said Proctor. “It’s all about service. And I’m just happy to have gotten a chance to serve.”