Dual ceremony welcomes new command team
Col. Sean Crockett relinquished command of 3rd Chemical Brigade to Col. Adam Hilburgh during a ceremony held Monday in Fort Leonard Wood’s Nutter Field House.
As part of the dual-ceremony event, Command Sgt. Maj. Micah Huling relinquished responsibility of the brigade to Command Sgt. Maj. Jorge Arzabala Jr.
“Today’s combined ceremony represents a successful transition from one commander and command sergeant major to another,” said Col. Daryl Hood, U.S. Army Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear School commandant. “At this very moment, we are establishing a new chapter for this brigade.”
Hood said under the command team of Crockett and Huling, the Soldiers and civilians of 3rd Chem. Bde. did an exceptional job with their mission of developing leaders and Soldiers, Soldiers who have enabled mission success for units in any environment.
Crockett said the Soldiers and civilians throughout the brigade are the reason for his success and represent the best the nation has to offer. He added that drill sergeants serve as the foundation for the brigade’s training mission and thanked them for setting an example for the Soldiers in training.
“(They) are the cadre leaders responsible for instilling Army Values, moral and ethical decision making, a sense of discipline and standards into our trainee population,” Crockett said. “They are the example of what right looks like in our Army today and provide our nation’s volunteers a daily example to emulate.”
Over the past two years, Hood said the brigade has trained 30,064 basic trainees; 8,842 Motor Transport Operators; 3,150 CBRN Soldiers; 559 CBRN lieutenants in the basic course; 172 CBRN captains in the career course; 42 CBRN warrant officers in the basic course; 31 warrants officers in the advanced course; and 8,400 Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and international partners at the Chemical Defense Training Facility.
Hood wished Huling well on his upcoming retirement.
“I salute you for your amazing career,” he said.
“At the end of the day the mission is all about the Soldiers,” Huling said. “We touched the lives of over 40,000 Soldiers who are trained to standard and I truly believe are ready to fight tonight.”
Huling addressed the incoming command team.
“You are taking over the most diverse and largest brigade in TRADOC. It will be a great ride, I promise,” Huling said. “Cherish each day because it will go by faster than you think.”
Hood said he looks forward to the great things the new command team will accomplish during their time here.
“You have my trust, confidence and support,” Hood said. “Speaking for the team, we are excited to integrate you and leverage your leadership.”
Hilburgh thanked his family for their continued support and positive outlook throughout their many moves with the military. He said this ceremony was special since his parents were able to attend.
“My dad has been a great leadership example to me,” Hilburgh said. “He was serving 50 years ago today in Vietnam with the 101st Airborne and he has instilled the same love of service he has always had in me.”
He added, “I look forward to working with and serving with each of you.”
Arzabala said he, too, is excited to be working with the brigade. He said it was 20 years ago to the day that he inprocessed at Fort Leonard Wood’s reception battalion as part of the first class of CBRN Soldiers to train at the installation.
“I am a direct product of this brigade,” Arzabala said. “Never in my wildest dreams would I (have) imagined I would have this opportunity.”
“That’s the beauty of it,” he said. “As stewards of this profession we must continue to forge the next generation. It all starts here with us, our actions, our character and competence.”