>La Grande Observer | Union and Wallowa Counties' News Leader

Observer news NE Oregon Classifieds Web
web powered by Web Search Powered by Google

Follow LaGrandeObserver.com

La Grande Observer print edition

view all La Grande Observer print publications »

La Grande Observer Daily Paper 07/25/14

The LaGrande Observer is now online in a Replica E-edition form and publishes Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Current subscribers have full access to the E-edition.

View Paper

If you are not a current subscriber, subscribe today for immediate access.

Subscribe


Recent article comments

Powered by Disqus

Home arrow News arrow Local News arrow National Guard unit welcomes new senior NCO

National Guard unit welcomes new senior NCO

Lt. Col. Jason Lambert (right) commander of the 3rd Battalion, 116th Cavalry Regiment, hands over the ceremonial Cavalry sabre to Command Sgt. Major Ron Bloker during a change of responsibility ceremony at the La Grande Army National Guard Readiness Center Saturday. PAT CALDWELL photo
Lt. Col. Jason Lambert (right) commander of the 3rd Battalion, 116th Cavalry Regiment, hands over the ceremonial Cavalry sabre to Command Sgt. Major Ron Bloker during a change of responsibility ceremony at the La Grande Army National Guard Readiness Center Saturday. PAT CALDWELL photo

LA GRANDE — Transitions are a way of life in a military organization, but that doesn’t mean the process is easy.

Saturday’s Change of Responsibility ceremony at the La Grande Army National Guard Readiness Center is a good case in point. A time-honored ritual, the change of responsibility is a formal procedure that signals the departure of a senior non-commissioned officer and the arrival of a new top NCO.

During Saturday’s event, Eastern Oregon’s Guard unit, the 3rd Battalion, 116th Cavalry Regiment, officially laid down the welcome mat for Command Sgt. Maj. Ron Bloker while it also said goodbye to longtime CSM Bill Wyllie.

“I’ve got mixed feelings watching a leader (Wyllie) that has meant so much to this organization move on. But I’m excited we are getting a new sergeant major, who I think will do an excellent job,” Lt. Col. Jason Lambert, the commander of the 3rd Battalion, said.

Wyllie of John Day is now the Command Sgt. Major for the Oregon Guard’s 41st Brigade. Wyllie spent the last six years as the Eastern Oregon Guard unit’s top non-commissioned officer and deployed with the unit to Iraq in 2010.

“It was one of the best jobs you can have as a sergeant major,” Wyllie said of his time with the battalion.

Bloker of Hillsboro said he welcomes the challenge as the battalions new command sergeant major.

“This is an amazing battalion and to be part of it is exciting,” Bloker said.

Bloker, 41, is a math teacher for the Jewell School District. He said the 3rd Battalion is in the middle of a remarkable era because it is training on the U.S. Army’s newest tank, the M1-A2 SEP 2.

“We have so much new equipment. Unless you are in the 3-116 you don’t have the M1 SEP 2. So, in a place like Ontario, you have 20 to 25 guys that get the opportunity to train on those tanks, an opportunity no one else has,” he said.

Bloker said he is eager to get going in his new post and mentioned several key goals he would like to achieve early.

“I want to continue to help the battalion develop and grow,” he said. “And help the battalion use the systems already in place.”

While he lives in Hillsboro, Bloker is no stranger to the 3rd Battalion. In fact, the 42-year-old Guardsman said he spent his entire career in the Eastern Oregon unit.

“I enlisted in 1992 with the battalion’s mortars,” he said.

Bloker said when he joined the Guard he wanted to find a job that was unique from anything he could find outside the military.

“I asked, ‘What do you guys do that I can’t do in the civilian world,’” he said.

Bloker worked his way up through the ranks but left the Guard in 2001. A few years later, though, he joined back up, again with the 3rd Battalion.

“By the time I was an E-5 (sergeant) I knew what I wanted but I also knew that meant a lot time studying off duty,” Bloker said.

Bloker conceded his job is not a one-weekend-a-month task anymore. The Guard changed since he signed up in the early 1990s he said.

“It is not once a month anymore. It is two or three weekends a month,” he said.

Bloker said his main focus as sergeant major is simple: taking care of soldiers. It is a job, he said, he loves.

“My worst day with soldiers is better than my best day outside the Guard,” he said.

The 3rd Battalion consists of Guard units in Hood River, The Dalles, Hermiston, Woodburn, Pendleton, La Grande, Baker City and Ontario.

 
blog comments powered by Disqus
News
Local / Sports / Business / State / National / Obituaries / Public Notices
Opinion
Editorials / Letters / Guest Columns / Columnists
Features
Outdoors / Ag / Spiritual / Go Magazine / Portraits
Classifieds
View all classifieds / Jobs / Autos / Real Estate / Rentals / Place an Ad
The Observer
About / Contact / Commercial Printing / Subscriptions / Terms of Use / Site Map
Also Online
Photo Reprints / Slideshows / Weather and Valley Cam / /index.php?option=com_rss&feed=RSS2.0&no_html=1">RSS Feed ?> RSS Feed

Follow La Grande Observer headlines on Follow La Grande Observer headlines on Twitter

© Copyright 2001 - 2014 Western Communications, Inc. All rights reserved. By Using this site you agree to our Terms of Use

LaGrandeObserver.com works best with the latest versions of Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Internet Explorer or Apple Safari

viagra marktplaats achat viagra ou cialis prix viagra paypal viagra rezept bekommen viagra pil kopen le viagra contient il de la gelatine ordonnance vidal viagra comprar viagra andorra sin receta viagra meilleur prix apcalis oral jelly ordina levitra cialis internetapotheke cialis versand comprar vigora españa viagra su internet ou trouver le cialis le moins cher costo citrato sildenafil kamagra kaufen deutschland precio viagra en farmacia españa rezept viagra cdiscount viagra comprar viagra generico de confianza viagra en ligne site fiable viagra günstig online kaufen cialis generique acheter cheapest viagra viagra på nettet acheter viagra sur viagra belgie compare cialis levitra viagra