News: 4ID Soldier Credits Teacher for His Success
Story by 2nd Lt. Anthony Buchanan
2nd Lt. Anthony D. Buchanan
133rd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment
BALAD RUZ, Iraq (April 3, 2006) --High school was the place where he first learned some of the values that would help him in his future. Right after high school, he knew he wanted to go forward and join an institution that has been know for decades for changing boys into grown men - the U. S. Army.
For Pfc. Billy Lewis,a Dallas, Texas, native deployed with Headquarters-Headquarters Troop, 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, the initial guidance given to him from a light-hearted English teacher at North Dallas High School in Dallas changed his life for the better and gave him a foundation for what he needed to succeed in the U. S. Army.
"My high school English teacher, Mrs. Kelly, did a lot for me," said Lewis. "She never let me take that alternate route that's so easily taken by many others."
Others Lewis attended high school with may have taken that other route, but thanks to one person determined to see him do something extraordinary with his life, Lewis is filling big shoes, in Iraq. He serves as the day shift noncommissioned officer in charge/radio telephone operator for the Tactical Center at Forward Operating Base Caldwell.
"My job is to monitor all communications in the TAC," said Lewis.
Lewis attributes the majority of his communications expertise to his official military occupation specialty, forward observer. The difference between monitoring communication as a forward observer and monitoring communications in a TAC is the number of communication devices to monitor.
"After you count everything, I monitor about seven different communication lines from various devices, one cell phone and one hand-held radio," said Lewis.
With these devices, Lewis has the power to communicate with Coalition and Iraqi forces at every level. He looks forward to the challenge and the level of responsibility.
"There's a battle captain here, but I pretty much do my own thing," said Lewis.
Lewis is married and recently had a newborn son. All because one person cared and decided to make a difference, a Soldier has become a better person.
"Thanks for pushing me and bringing out the best," said Lewis referring to Mrs. Kelly, an English teacher from North Dallas High School who encouraged a student to his true potential.