The 20th Engineer Brigade welcomed a new command sergeant major during a change of responsibility ceremony between Command Sgts. Major Butler J. Kendrick Jr. and Dewayne Keel on May 11 at Rafferty Field.
In keeping with military tradition, a change of responsibility ceremony is held when a senior noncommissioned officer leaves a position of leadership and a new senior NCO takes his place.
Kendrick, a native of Brooklyn, New York, enlisted in the Army in 1985 as a combat engineer. Throughout his career he has served in several leadership positions.
He served as first sergeant of Company C, 65th Engineer Battalion, and Company B, and Headquarters and Headquarters Company of the 10th Engineer Battalion. He also served as command sergeant major of the 1st Sustainment Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division prior to serving as the command sergeant major of the 20th Engineer Brigade.
“Wow what a bitter- sweet day to be standing at the podium to ‘farewell’ the greatest engineer brigade in the world,” said Kendrick. “The ceremony may represent me but the ultimate gathering is about the team.”
As Kendrick departs the team and moves on, he will always remain proud of the brigade and accepts that the bar has been set just a little higher for those under his leadership at his next command position.
“20th Engineer Brigade, I will always be grateful for what you have done and always remember no one is bigger than the team,” said Kendrick. “I honor your professionalism and work ethics for showing the world what right looks like.”
“My mission as the brigade CSM (Command Sgt. Maj.) could not have lasted a day without the officers, NCOs and the Soldiers of your character and competency level and commitment to expertise,” said Kendrick.
Raymer welcomed Keel and his wife Sheree as they joined the 20th Engineer Brigade command team. Keel and his wife came here from the 94th Engineer Battalion, Fort Leonard Wood, Mo.
Keel, a native of Trenton, N. J., has also held several other leadership positions throughout his career. He has served as battalion operations sergeant, first sergeant, brigade operations sergeant major, and more.
“He will maintain the standards set by Kendrick and expand upon them,” said Raymer, “Follow him, and do as he does.”
Keel gave thanks to the guest for attending the change of responsibility ceremony.
“I would like to take a moment to thank Command Sergeant Major Kendrick whose leadership and dedication to the unit will not be forgotten,” said Keel, “Thanks sergeant major for a smooth transition and allowing me to inherit a successful organization. Airborne all the way!”