13th SC(E) and Wagonmasters change enlisted leaders
By Staff Sgt. Rob Strain and Staff Sgt. Joel F. Gibson
15th Sustainment Brigade and 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Public Affairs
FORT HOOD, Texas — The 15th Sustainment Brigade and the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), changed senior enlisted leaders during ceremonies Oct. 15 at Abrams Physical Fitness Center and Oct. 17 at the 13th SC(E) Headquarters on Fort Hood.
Command Sgt. Maj. Mark Joseph, who served as the brigade’s senior noncommissioned officer since 2005, officially handed the reins of responsibility of the 15th SB to Command Sgt. Maj. Nathaniel Bartee Sr. in the Oct. 15 ceremony.
Command Sgt. Maj. Terry Fountain, who has been with the 13th SC(E) since 1999, serving as the senior noncommissioned officer since 2005, handed responsibility of the 13th SC(E) to Joseph in the Oct. 17 ceremony.
Col. Larry Phelps, the wagonmaster brigade’s commander, took a few minutes during the brigade ceremony to reflect on Joseph’s time as the brigade’s senior enlisted advisor.
“Under [Joseph’s] leadership, the Wagonmasters have undergone the greatest period of change and productivity in the brigade’s history,” Phelps said.
During Joseph’s tenure, the brigade changed from the Division Support Command to the 15th Support Brigade under the 1st Cavalry Division before it became the 15th Sustainment Brigade under the 13th SC(E), Phelps explained.
Once the unit returned from Iraq, Joseph set the conditions to transition the brigade to the 13th SC(E), deactivating two battalions and inheriting two new battalions, all while ensuring the Soldiers were taken care of during the transition, he said.
“Under lesser leadership, this could have been painful,” Phelps said. “But CSM Joseph made it look almost effortless.”
Joseph thanked many of the people that made it possible for him to be where he is today, but reserved the most gratitude for his family.
“They are our true supporters in what we do, and are always there during the good times as well as the bad,” Joseph said. “They put up with us and our attitudes, so thank you to all the families and family members.”
Joseph described the day as bittersweet, since his time with the Wagonmasters has come to an end, but he looks forward to the next chapter in his life as he moves on to become the senior noncommissioned officer for the 13th SC(E).
Bartee, a 23-year Army veteran, previously served as the 180th Transportation Battalion’s senior enlisted advisor, a position he’s held since May 2007.
During the 13th SC(E) ceremony, Brig. Gen. Paul L. Wentz remarked about serving with Fountain as a battalion commander, when the command sergeant major was still a first sergeant.
Fountain’s time with the 13th started in 1999 when he served as the G3 senior noncommissioned officer.
His time as a command sergeant major began when he took that position within the 2nd chemical battalion, which at the time was part of the 13th SC(E).
“One of the best parts of moving from the headquarters to the 2nd chemical battalion was not having to change my patch,” Fountain joked.
After deploying with 2nd chemical battalion, Fountain became the 13th SC(E) rear detachment command sergeant major, but only briefly because the Corps Distribution Command needed a command sergeant major to deploy with them.
Upon redeployment, Fountain became the senior enlisted advisor for the 13th SC(E).
Under Fountain’s leadership, the 13th Corps Support Command redesignated to the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), deployed in support of Joint Task Force-Katrina to provide humanitarian support, and deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 06-08.
Fountain joined the Army in 1978 as a signal Soldier, and reclassified to the chemical branch in 1980. Despite a background in communications and chemical operations, he embraced the logistics mission of the ESC.
“People talk about combat arms as the pointy end of the spear. I like to think of logistics as the arm that provides the force for that spear,” Fountain said.
Col. Larry Phelps, commander, 15th Sustainment Brigade, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), hands the traditional noncommissioned officer's saber to Command Sgt. Maj. Nathaniel Bartee Sr., the incoming senior enlisted advisor for the brigade, entrusting him with responsibility for the Soldiers of the "Wagonmaster" brigade during a ceremony Oct. 15 at Abrams Physical Fitness Center. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Rob Strain, 15th Sustainment Brigade Public Affairs)
Brig. Gen. Paul L. Wentz, commanding general, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), hands the traditional noncommissioned officer's saber to Command Sgt. Maj. Mark D. Joseph, the incoming senior enlisted advisor for the ESC, entrusting him with responsibility for the Soldiers of the ESC during a ceremony Oct. 17 at the 13th SC(E) Headquarters. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Joel F. Gibson, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Public Affairs)