News: Former chief of staff visits troops
Story by Sgt. Eric Glassey
FORT CARSON, Colo. - Army retired Gen. Gordon R. Sullivan compares the challenges facing today’s Army with those he dealt with during the drawdown while he was the service’s chief of staff from 1991-1995.
Sullivan started his Feb. 7 visit to Fort Carson with a breakfast at the Robert C. Stack Jr. Dining Facility, where he held a question-and-answer session with enlisted Fort Carson soldiers. Later, he talked to leaders, commanders and senior enlisted personnel about his experiences in the military.
“He was chief of staff from ‘91 to ‘95, and, as you know, the Army was going through what we’re going through now. It was a period of downsizing. He lived through that and kept us on track to where we are today,” said Maj. Gen. Joseph Anderson, commanding general, 4th Infantry Division and Fort Carson.
Sullivan reflected on history and gave the leaders some words of guidance.
“I became the chief of staff of the Army in June of 1991, right after the Gulf War,” Sullivan said. “History has a habit of repeating itself. I’ll give you the bottom line, you are being asked once again … to do essentially what you have the last time.”
Sullivan talked about the logistical accomplishments the Army made in 1991 and moving 500,000 soldiers during the Gulf War. He gave a word of caution on his perception of future events.
“Challenges you’ll be facing going forward are similar, but not completely,” Sullivan said. “You are in the middle of a culminating event. You’re between two campaigns. We should be preparing for the next fight and it will be coming.”
He later attended the annual Pikes Peak Chapter of the Association of the Unites States Army annual membership luncheon at the Cheyenne Mountain Resort in Colorado Springs, where Sullivan, AUSA president and chief executive officer, served as a guest speaker talking to local businesses and soldiers. He commended the soldiers for their courage for enlisting, especially during a time of conflict.
“There are privates who sign up and know what we (the Army is) heading towards,” Sullivan said. “Signing up takes a lot of courage.”
Several junior soldiers attending the luncheon were given a year membership with AUSA by local businesses.
“I was invited by my sergeant major,” said Pfc. Douglas McDonald, 4th Combat Aviation Brigade, 4th Infantry Division. “My membership was sponsored, which was pretty cool.”
McDonald said he found the luncheon to be interesting, and enjoyed listening to the retired general.
Sullivan thanked the troops for their courage, and the corporate sponsors for their support of Fort Carson and the soldiers.
“I can’t think of a better place to serve - a better place to be a part of our Army - when you look at what the community does for the post and what the post does for the community,” said Kenneth Hunzeker, president of the AUSA Pikes Peak Chapter. “It’s a great relationship.”