MESA, Ariz. –
Lt. Col. Joshua M. Fields, a Breese, Illinois, native, assumed command of the 98th Signal Battalion, in a change of command ceremony at the Student Union Cooley Ballroom, on the University of Arizona campus, where Col. Eric L. Rahman, 505th Signal Brigade commander, was present to transfer the unit colors from Lt. Col. Carey M. McCroskey, outgoing commander, to Fields, June 11, 2022.
Fields is a graduate of Western Illinois University, where he received a Bachelor of Science in Law Enforcement & Justice Administration. He received his commission through ROTC in May 2006 and assigned to the Armor Branch. Fields deployed to Salah Al Din Province, Iraq, during the surge, in 2007, and has been awarded the Bronze Star.
On the hottest day of the year, the change of command ceremony took place in the comforts of the Student Union ballroom, where friends and family gathered, and included special guest Brig. Gen. Michael J. Dougherty, 335th Signal Command (Theater) deputy commanding general.
The ceremony began with the traditional ceremonial pageantry. The standing down trace companies were summoned to order arms. The audience stood for the presentation of the colors and honors, and the units were brought to present arms, then to parade rest. These displays of uniformity were executed with discipline and precision.
McCroskey thanked her Soldiers and said that the transformation from a battalion returning from a deployment to a battalion that stands ready to support the defense of our nation, if called upon, was amazing.
“This kind of success doesn’t come by coincidence. It happens because of the teams standing in front of you and the teams standing behind them,” said McCroskey. “And last, but not least, I want to thank my family. I’m grateful for your love and support throughout my military career. Your patience doesn’t go unnoticed, so thank you.”
Fields was enthusiastic and energized as he accepted the 98th Signal Battalion command. After thanking Dougherty, Rahman, Command Sgt. Maj. James A. Milligan, family, friends, and other distinguished guests for attending, he made a short speech, which is customary for this ceremony.
“My leadership philosophies are to take care of the little things and the big things will take care of themselves and to not bring your leadership problems, bring me your solutions,” said Fields. “I challenge you all to try to these philosophies. I challenge myself every day to live those philosophies. Again, I look forward to working with and learning from each of you.”
Fields has also attended the Signal Captains Career Course, the officers Intermediate Level Education course, and he is currently enrolled in the Advanced Operations Course. During his military service, he has also earned the Iraq Campaign Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, Combat Action Badge and the Air Assault Badge.
Later in the afternoon, there was a change of responsibility ceremony that welcomed the new command sergeant major for the 505th Signal Brigade. In the center of the ballroom, Col. Rahman received the unit colors from Command Sgt. Maj. Steven C. McGrath, the outgoing CSM, who then passed it to Command Sgt. Maj. James A. Milligan, who was happy to assume the position for the next two years.
The 505th TTSB deploys to conduct mission command and provide network planning and engineering support for assigned units to install, operate, maintain, secure and defend the Department of Defense Information Network, which are communications in support of the Theater Army and United Land Operations.