Story by U.S. Army Sgt. Darrell Stembridge
The 1st Cavalry Division Artillery held a change of responsibility ceremony to bid farewell to Command Sgt. Maj. Edgar Monsanto, 1st Cavalry Division Artillery command sergeant major and welcome Command Sgt. Maj. Loyd Rhoades Feb. 13 on Cooper Field at Fort Hood (Now designated Fort Cavazos), Texas.
“Today I’d like to say thank you Command Sgt. Maj. Monsanto,” Col. Timothy Gatlin, DIVARTY commander, said. “You have worked tirelessly to enforce the standard and have been a quintessential wingman.”
The change of responsibility is a traditional military ceremony, which included the outgoing command sergeant major, Monsanto passing the brigade colors back to Gatlin, signifying his relinquishment of responsibility for the brigade, Gatlin then passes the colors to the incoming command sergeant major, Rhoades, representing his assumption responsibility for DIVARTY and its Troopers.
“DIVARTY’s accomplishments in areas of training and manning the division’s fire’s support apparatus have been outstanding,” said Gatlin. “It speaks to the time and effort that Monsanto has spent working to achieve excellence.”
Gatlin thanked Monsanto for his contributions to the division during his time. He continued to highlight some of the characteristics that he added to the team and wished him luck on his future endeavors.
“Inside the unit, there are way too many people to thank,” said Monsanto. “To each of you, please just know that I leave with a heart full of appreciation for our time together.”
DIVARTY sets forth to gain more experience at the National Training Center this summer which will be an important ingredient to certify and qualify the Division’s Artillery batteries and battalions.
“The past month you have set me up for success,” said Rhoades. “I have continued the tradition forward into the future, and I hope your transition goes as smoothly as mine was as you head to Fort Knox.”
Prior to assuming command of DIVARTY, Rhoades’ recent assignments include serving as the command sergeant major trainer for Wolf Team at the National Training Center. His combat and overseas operational tours include Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Inherent Resolve. Rhoades is a graduate of all levels of the Noncommissioned Officers Professional Development System through the Sergeants Major Course-Class 68, Joint Firepower Course, and Master Resiliency Trainer Course.
“Today, Shari, Savannah, Anjelica and I are set to join “America’s First Team” and live the legend,” Rhoades concluded. “We are all excited and humbled to lead the fires community here on Fort Hood (Now designated Fort Cavazos) where we will all grow together.”