Responsibility is one of the most important things in the Army. Accountability is also a very important part of being in the army and it goes hand in hand with responsibility. I failed to maintain accountability of my weapon while at Yakima Training Center. This was not an example of being a responsible soldier. This essay will explain what happened and why I think responsibilty is so important in the US Army. I had set my weapon down in the tool room so that I can go grab a couple of things from one of the tricons.
When I did this, I had lost visual contact of my weapon while it was unsecure. Because my weapon was unsecure, someone walking by saw it and had grabbed it. When I got back from the tricons, I had noticed that my weapon was missing. When I had imformed my Platoon Sergeant about it, he had to go report it to the 1st Sergeant. When he went to report that I had left my weapon unsecure and it is now missing, the 1st Sergeant was already in possesion of my weapon. My Platoon informed me that I was to report to the 1st Sergeant immediately.
When I arrived to the 1SG’s desk, my weapon was laying on the desk completely disassembled. He asked me why he has my weapon and told him what had happened. I had to go get my Sqaud Leader so that 1st Sergeant can talk to him and my Platoon Sergeant. After the three of them had finished talking, I was brought back into the room. 1st Sergeant said that I was going to earn every piece of my weapon back. I had to run to different places and do different things to earn back each piece one at a time.
When I had finished, the 1st Sergeant and I talked about the importance of keeping your weapon secure at all times and how one person losing their weapon can effect, not only the soldier that loses it, but their entire chain of command. Responsibility is the obligation for the proper, custody, care, and safekeeping of property or funds entrusted to the possession or supervision of an individual. As a soldier, I am required to be responsible for many things, including other people at certain times. If you cant be a responsible person, then you wont be successful in the Army.
As you gain more rank and are put in higher positions of authority, your level of responsibility increases as well. When you are in positions of leadership, you are required to manage other soldiers and are not only responsible for yourself and your actions, but for others and their actions. Other soldiers lives are entrusted to you in some circumstances. If something were to happen to one of your soldiers because of your lack of responsibilty, it can all fall on you. You may be held accountable for your soldiers actions in some cases if they were to get into any kind of trouble or are not conducting themselves as soldiers.
Its your responsibility to make sure that they are squared away and doing the right things. When a soldier is out of place or is doing the wrong thing, it can effect everyone around them. Being in a leadership position, it is key to make sure everyone below you is doing the right things so that the integrity of the group is not effected. By me being a SPC, younger soldiers look up to me as I set examples for them. When I become irresponsible by not being accountable for something or by doing the wrong thing, that sets a bad example for the soldiers that are lookig up to me.
When this sort of thing happens, I am not only failing myself as a soldier, but i am also failing them as a leader and role model. The Soldiers Creed and The Army Values are something that you’re supposed to live by when you are in the US Army. I was not able to live The Soldiers Creed when I failed to maintain accountability of my weapon. Certain parts of The Soldiers Creed and the Army Values were directly failed: I am a Warrior and a member of a team; When I left my weapon unsecure and it was taken, I no longer was able to be a warrior let alone a successful member of a team.
How was I supposed to be able to help my team and defend them in battle without my weapon? I had become an unfunctioning part of the team. I will always place the mission first; My mission was to maintain acountability of my weapon at all times. I had lost accountability of my weapon and therefor failed the mission. I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills; This was not me being disciplined or mentally tough at all.
I failed to be proficient in my tasks and drills by losing my weapon. I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself; Maintaining my arms doesn’t just mean that I keep them in good working condition, it also means that I’ll maintain accountbility of them. By losing accountability of my weapon I was not maintaining my arms. I am an expert and I am a professional; As an expert and a professional, I am expected to have a certain degree of responsibility and accountability of myself, my actions, my equipment, and other soldiers.
When you lose accountability of something, in this case my weapon, it is hard for others to see you as being a responsible soldier. If others dont see you as someone who can be responsible or accountable, it’s hard to be considered a professional by your fellow soldiers. I am an American Soldier; Being an American Soldier means living the Soldiers Creed. When you fail to live any part of the Soldiers Creed, you fail to maintain the image of an American Soldier. This can have a negative effect on the soldiers around you if they feel that you are creating a bad image for the rest of them.
Duty; Doing your duty means more than carrying out your assigned tasks. Duty means being able to accomplish tasks as part of a team and being able to fulfill your obligations. Within each mission, there are many missions working together to help the main mission be a success. One of my missions was to maintain accountability of my weapon. When I lost accountability of my weapon I had failed my mission. By me failing my mission, I caused the platoons mission of maintaing accountablility of all sensitive items to fail.
Luckily, this chain reaction was solved at the company level. If it had not been solved at the company level it could have caused the entire company to have a failed mission. I did not fulfill my obligations and feel that I failed to live this Army Value. Integrity; Integrity is doing what’s right on and off duty no matter what your surroundings are. As you make make more decisions based on integrity, your fellow soldiers and your leadership will gain trust in you and look to you for more things such as tasks or help with something.
When I left my weapon unsecure, it was not a decision based on integrity. It was a decision based on what was easier at the moment. That decision resulted in losing accountability of my weapon. This will effect how much others can trust that I’ll do the right thing at all times and whether or not they can count on be to be successful. I have damaged my image by making a bad decision and will have to help regain my image by making more decisions based on integrity and not what’s easier from now on.