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DLIFLC Command Sgt. Maj. retires after 26 years of service
|MONTEREY, Calif. - The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center said goodbye to its outgoing senior enlisted leader, Command Sgt. Maj. Tracey Bellotte, and welcomed incoming Command Sgt. Maj. Alan Pendergast June 22, during a change of responsibility and retirement ceremony on Soldier Field at the Presidio of Monterey. |
The change of responsibility was completed with the symbolic gesture of passing a ceremonial saber from Bellotte to Pendergast. “
The command sergeant major was steel reinforced with competency. She taught not only her subordinates, but she taught me. Whether it was about awards, military justice, command policy, or receiving the remains of KIA [Soldiers killed in action] with plane-side honors, she earned my trust and confidence. She made this command stronger and made me a better Soldier,” said DLIFLC commandant, Col. Danial Pick to the audience during the ceremony.
“The single factor that differentiates a great army from the rest, the United States Army from the rest, is the quality of our Non-commissioned Officers. So with that in mind, I want to welcome Command Sergeant Major Pendergast to this command. CSM, your background as a leader, linguist, and a DLI graduate make you the right Soldier for this position,” said Pick.
As part of the ceremony, nine female Soldiers from the rank of Private to 1st Sgt. passed Bellotte’s retirement flag through each rank she held in her career and presented it to her at the end. Along with the flag, Bellotte received a Legion of Merit for exceptionally meritorious conduct throughout her 26-year career.
During her farewell speech, Bellotte recounted the highlights of her Army service. She pointed out that DLIFLC was her first and also her last duty assignment. According to Bellotte, the training she received at DLIFLC put her on the path to the full career that she enjoyed for more than two decades.
Throughout her time in the Army, Bellotte served as an Electronic Voice Interceptor and a German linguist. She served in Darmstadt and Hanau in Germany, as well as in Washington D.C., Fort Hood, and Fort Bliss. Bellotte also deployed three times in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Story and photos by Brian Lamar, Strategic Communications
Photo 1: Outgoing DLIFLC Command Sgt. Maj. Tracey Bellotte, right, participates in the passing of the non-commissioned officers’ sword with other senior leaders as part of her Change of Responsibility ceremony on Soldier Field at the Presidio of Monterey 22 June 2012. The passing of the sword signifies the relinquishing of responsibility and authority from the outgoing to the incoming command Sgt. Maj. (U.S. Army photo by Brian Lamar)
Photo 2: Outgoing DLIFLC Command Sgt. Maj. Tracey Bellotte stands at attention next to DLIFLC Commandant Col. Danial D. Pick after she was awarded the Legion of Merit June 22, during her Change of Responsibility ceremony. (U.S. Army photo by Brian Lamar)