Remembering A Professional Soldier

The Long March
A soldier assigned to the 455th Engineer Company, 301st Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, reaches higher ground to use his Single Channel Ground and Airborne Radio System at Orchard Combat Training Center, Idaho, July 13, 2017
U.S. Army Reserve/Sgt. Demetrio Montoya/301st Maneuver Enhancement Brigade

There is a lot of talk about the profession of arms and what a professional soldier should look like.


I would like to share a little about a professional I once had the honor and privilege to serve with.

The Professional was a non-commissioned officer that everybody came to see at one time or another. Regardless of rank or position, the Professional treated everyone with respect and courtesy. When somebody needed a part, or services coordinated, or fluids or tires or a tool; they came to the Professional. If it concerned a piece of military equipment it most certainly concerned the Professional. He didn’t care if you were a line grunt, a driver, a cook with an MKT trailer or a Commander whose vehicle was down.

The Professional treated everyone with the same level of respect and consideration regardless if they were a private or sergeant or 1SG or captain. The Professional knew how to prioritize and maximize efficiency. Making sure people had what they needed to accomplish their task and fulfill their purpose was the Professional’s main priority. Light hearted joking and banter came along with how the Professional went about encouraging every Soldier that came to the door. The Professional cared about not just making sure tasks were completed but that everyone who came by left more motivated and in better spirits.

The Professional did not care about petty problems or personality issues. Ethnic origin or age or gender or any other reason people divide themselves; all of which were of no consequence. The Professional cared more about mission accomplishment and the people that depended on him than petty drama. He took care of his team, and those who were relying on his efforts to get things done.

The Professional did not have all of the special skill badges or tabs or awards that many worship as the only marks of a warrior’s worth. He was Airborne and had deployed with the 82nd, so the instant credibility from serving in a legacy unit was there on his uniform, but he never let that be what defined his professionalism. Instead, it was simple and quantifiable in how he treated everyone who came to his desk and how the results of his efforts directly equates to readiness and mission accomplishment.

I think it is important we all take the time to realize and recognize the professionals in our lives and display gratitude by emulating their examples. Be the difference. Be a Professional. Be like Sgt. Bunch.

Luke Flowers. 1LT, IN Retired. OIF I, OIF II, OIF 05-07, OIF 07-09. Currently experiencing life after the Army. 

Soldiers with Army Trauma Training Center's Combat Extremity Surgery Course (CESC) prepare a cadaver limb for placement of an external fixator during the hands-on training portion of the two-day course hosted by William Beaumont Army Medical Center at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in El Paso, Texas. (U.S. Army/Marcy Sanchez)

The Army is looking for some fresh body parts — $32.5 million worth, to be precise.

An Army Medical Command solicitation published on Thursday details a need "fresh frozen cadaver limbs" for combat surgery training at the Army Medical Department Center & School (AMEDDC&S) at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston in El Paso, Texas.

Read More Show Less
Staff Sgt. Logan Melgar (U.S. Army photo)

A Navy SEAL and Marine Raider charged with murder face a maximum penalty of life in prison without the possibility of parole now that they will have to appear before general courts-martial for their alleged roles in the death of Special Forces Staff Sgt. Logan Melgar, the Navy announced on Friday.

Navy Chief Special Warfare Operator Tony Dedolph and U.S. Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Mario Madero-Rodriguez have been charged with felony murder and other offenses, a Navy Region Mid-Atlantic news release said. If convicted, the maximum penalty for murder also includes reduction in rank to E-1, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and a punitive discharge.

Read More Show Less

What started as a wildly popular Facebook hoax titled Storm Area 51, They Can't Stop All of Us back in June has since morphed into a real live event. That's right, the long awaited day is upon us.

As of Friday morning, people have begun to make their way to the secret U.S. military installation in the Nevada desert in search of answers to the questions that plague us all: Are we alone in the universe? Is our government secretly hiding a bunch of aliens? Just how fast can I "Naruto run" past the base gate? And how far can we take a joke with the U.S. military?

Read More Show Less

The Marine Corps is loading up one of its experimental unmanned ground vehicle with a buttload of firepower.

The Marine Corps Warfighting Lab is working on a prototype of its tracked Expeditionary Modular Autonomous Vehicle (EMAV) with a remote-controlled .50 caliber machine gun turret and a specialized launcher for kamikaze drones to accompany Marines in urban environments, Military.com reports.

Read More Show Less

An Air Force civilian has died at Al Udeid Air Base in Qatar in a "non-combat related incident," U.S. Air Forces Central Command announced on Friday.

Jason P. Zaki, 32, died on Wednesday while deployed to the 609th Air Operations Center from the Pentagon, an AFCENT news release says.

Read More Show Less