Wranglers Give Students a Tour of Army Life

Pvt. Sean E. McGuire
Public Affairs Specialist
4th Sustainment Brigade

FORT HOOD, Texas — Bearing the cold that has begun leaking into Fort Hood’s morning routine, 4th Sustainment Brigade Soldiers from five companies of the 553rd Combat Sustainment Support Battalion showed students of Temple’s Travis Middle School what it’s like to be in the Army.

On Nov. 24, members of the 289th Quartermaster Company, 263rd Maintenance Company, 96th Transportation Company, 53rd Quartermaster Company, and the 62nd Quartermaster Company volunteered to take part in the “Culture within a Culture” event with the battalion’s sponsored school.

Beginning around 8 a.m., the 132 students were ushered to a combatives pit where Soldiers showed them various techniques, and at one point, the large group that was huddling together got to witness a pushup contest between Soldiers and students. From there they went to the 1st Cavalry Division Museum and had lunch in the Kieschnick Gym before rounding the day off with a chance to jump on and learn about military vehicles such as the Light Medium Tactical Vehicle.

Travis Middle School has been the adopted school for close to three years, and 553rd CSSB really began making its presence felt this school year.

“Our Soldiers volunteer to do this. We tutor students, help with hall monitoring, pass out books, go on field trips, and assist with science projects. We even pitch in at the cafeteria, and we helped with the school’s book fair last month,” said Sgt. 1st Class Andrien Tillman, a member of the 289th QM and school liaison. “The Soldiers are showing they care.”

“We’re here to give them the Army experience, to show them what it’s like to be a Soldier with: combatives, trying on our equipment, and checking out our vehicles,” stated 2nd Lt. Cecil Davis, a platoon leader for the 289th QM who oversaw the day’s events.

The student’s ear-to-ear grins and eagerness to try everything grew while they strolled through the museum and marveled at what it had to offer. By the day’s end there was no lack of energy as the students bombarded various vehicles, blasted vehicle horns, started engines, and climbed up and down ladders.

“This was great. The kids absolutely loved it,” said Irene Diaz, a 6th grade Social Studies teacher at Travis Middle that attended the field trip with her class.

“This was an opportunity for the kids to see a different world,” Diaz added.

“Some students never get a chance to get out of their neighborhoods. The Soldier’s presence helps bring something positive,” concluded Diaz. Teachers can’t be the students’ only role models so having Soldiers, especially young men and women, gives them other role models.”

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FORT HOOD, Texas — 40 Soldiers from five different companies of the 553rd Combat Support Battalion show Travis Middle School students the ropes in a combatives pit Nov. 24 during the “Culture within a Culture” event.
(U.S. Army Photo by Pvt. Sean E. McGuire)


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FORT HOOD, Texas — 263rd Maintenance Company's Pfc. Courtney Brown, a small arms repair specialist, passes a cup of hot chocolate to a Travis Middle School student Nov. 24 while a push-up contest and combatives go on in the background.
(U.S. Army Photo by Pvt. Sean E. McGuire)

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FORT HOOD, Texas — Spc. Joel Jasso, a motor transport operator for the 289th Quartermaster Company lets a Travis Middle School student turn on a Light Medium Tactical Vehicle Nov. 24 during an event put on for the students.
(U.S. Army Photo by Pvt. Sean E. McGuire)