News: Sword passes to new division command sergeant major
Story by Staff Sgt. Mark Miranda
JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. - The 7th Infantry Division honored its new command sergeant major during a change of responsibility ceremony in front of the division headquarters building Oct. 15, 2013.
Command Sgt. Maj. Samuel Murphy assumed the role from Command Sgt. Maj. Delbert Byers, who held the position since the unit stood up at JBLM in 2012. The 7th ID commander, Maj. Gen. Stephen R. Lanza, presided over the event.
For the past year, Byers has served as the command sergeant major for the 7th Infantry Division. Byers’ next assignment will be at the U.S. Military Academy.
Murphy was the brigade command sergeant major for 3-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 7th Infantry Division during their most recent deployment and previously served as the battalion command sergeant major for 1st Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 4-2 SBCT. Murphy most recently served as the operations sergeant major for the 7th Infantry Division. Murphy has deployed in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom, New Dawn and Enduring Freedom.
“We’re here celebrating two great leaders,” Lanza said of Byers and Murphy. “I’m grateful to have had Command Sgt. Maj. Byers as the first CSM of this division on JBLM. The programs he introduced will train and build the division’s next generation of leaders.”
Lanza presented the Legion of Merit medal to Byers, a native of Portsmouth, Va.
“I have nothing but confidence that Command Sgt. Maj. Murphy will take the division to new heights, and move it forward to the next objective. I’m proud to have him on the Bayonet Team,” Lanza added.
The traditional ceremony consisted of the passing of the traditional noncommissioned officer sword, a symbol of the authority of the NCO.
“This is bittersweet, but I’m eager to have the opportunity to serve further,” Byers said in his remarks. “This (position) was difficult, but rewarding. It’s amazing what we’ve accomplished, and I want to thank the heroic efforts of this division staff, and those of the brigades for adapting and providing support.”
Murphy thanked Byers for his guidance over the past year.
“I’m looking forward to writing a new chapter with 7th ID,” Murphy said, “and to the leaders and soldiers of the division, I look forward to working for you.”
In his position as the senior noncommissioned officer, the division command sergeant major advises the commanding general on the nearly 20,000 soldiers in the division, emphasizing training and quality of life issues. He is also charged with the fair and responsible management of promotions and personnel actions.