News: Fallen Soldier honored, inducted into time-honored corps
Story by Spc. Shantelle Campbell
TIKRIT, Iraq — As the sun began to set behind the clouds in Iraq's northern sky, Soldiers of the 2nd Battalion, 32nd Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division out of Fort Riley, Kan., gathered to see 11 "Proud Americans" get inducted into the Noncommissioned Officer Corps during a 2-32 FAR NCO Induction Ceremony at Contingency Operating Base Speicher, Dec. 31.
Among the Soldiers being inducted into the time-honored corps was Cpl. Tony Carrasco Jr., of El Paso, Texas, who gave his life for his country while serving in Salah ad-Din province, Iraq, Nov. 4.
During the ceremony, Carrasco was remembered as being an outstanding individual and Soldier who not only inspired but brought out the best in his subordinates. He was someone for younger Soldiers to look up to and constantly set himself apart from others.
Carrasco was remembered as being someone who was determined and had the innate ability to build teams. He lived the Warrior Ethos by never quitting on his Soldiers and was always ready to perform well beyond his duties.
Command Sgt. Maj. Taylor Poindexter, the top noncommissioned officer of the "Proud Americans," remembers his Soldier as someone who was the embodiment of loyalty and said that the ceremony was special in that it was the last ceremony of the year and provided an opportunity to honor an extraordinary Soldier.
"[Cpl. Carrasco's] best quality was his loyalty," said Poindexter. "Everything that we want an NCO to be is what he held close to him naturally."
"I'm proud to have [Cpl. Carrasco] inducted [into the NCO Corps]," said Sgt. Shedrick Franklin, of Baton Rouge, La., an NCO inductee and a signal retrans NCO for Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 2-32 FAR. "[The induction] is very special to me because he was a fellow Soldier in our battalion ... It really means a lot to me."