News: Arizona Guardsmen honored at luncheon
Story by Sgt. Brian Barbour
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — The Arizona Territorial Chapter 7202, association of the U.S. Army, presented awards today to outstanding Arizona soldiers and cadets during a luncheon at McCormick Ranch Golf Club in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Staff Sgt. Joseph McKinney, Arizona Recruiting and Retention and Command Chief Warrant Officer 5 John Vitt, and his family, were recognized during the luncheon.
McKinney was presented with an award for being selected Arizona’s Recruiting noncommissioned officer of the year for 2013.
McKinney has served in the military 14 years and been a recruiter for two and a half years. He beat out three other recruiters also competing for the honor.
McKinney said it felt good to be recognized for his efforts as a recruiter and credited his experience on active duty, the National Guard, and his passion for his job.
“When you are passionate about something you want people to do, you’re going to motivate them to do it more,” said McKinney.
When asked what it takes to succeed McKinney said, “It’s about what you put into it.”
“If you’re going to do something, give it your all,” said McKinney. Don’t give half your effort; give it all your effort and take pride in your work.”
Vitt, wife Roxanne, daughter Amanda and son Christopher, received an award from the ATC 7202, AUSA for 2013 Volunteer Family of the Year with a special citation for exceptional service.
Vitt’s military service includes nearly 40 years, with 34 of those years, full-time. He and his family have been giving back to the community for many years, volunteering their time and service to multiple non-profit organizations.
Vitt has spent roughly 200 hours volunteering every Monday after work at the USO, Sky Harbor International Airport. His family has also volunteered for nonprofit organizations such as Epsilon Sigma Alpha, the Girl Scouts and the National Guard Association among others.
“Although it can sometimes be overwhelming, the volunteering feels good,” said Vitt.
“I’ve known chief Vitt for many years now; his family and his volunteerism is astronomical,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Pamela Higgins, Arizona State Command sergeant major. “His service to the community, to Arizona, and the United States of America is just awesome. He is a true patriot and a great servicemen for Arizona.”