In a ceremony held in Joint Base Myer Henderson-Hall, Va. in Brucker Hall on December 2, 2015, Sgt 1st Class John A. Freeland and Staff Sgt. Daniel P. Reilly were inducted into the Sergeant Audie Murphy Club (SAMC).
The SAMC is a private club only open to NCO’s. The NCO’s must exhibit exemplary leadership and performance to merit induction into the SAMC.
The base of the SAMC philosophy is loyalty, discipline, professionalism, and caring.
Only the top two percent of the NCO Corps are represented in the SAMC.
Freeland is from Elkridge, Maryland. He is a member of of the 289th Military Police Company, 4th Battalion, 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) and served in both Afghanistan and Iraq.
Sgt. 1st Class David J. Parthemore, also assigned to the 289th MP Co., said he felt honored his friend was inducted into the SAMC.
“He’s a mentor, and asset to the company,” said Parthemore. “He deserves it.”
Military Police in the 289th are excelling in regard to SAMC members, said Parthemore.
“Military Police are professionals,” said Parthemore. “That is proven by inductions into such an elite and professional organization.”
Freeland’s wife, Sarah C. Freeland said she was very proud of her husband.
“Its really nice to see him recognized for his commitment to his soldiers,” said Mrs. Freeland. “He really truly does care, and he works really hard to make sure his Soldiers are taken care of.”
“The simple answer is they come before you,” said Freeland.
The SAMC looks for members to “…exemplify leadership characterized by personal concern for the needs, training, development, and welfare of Soldiers and concern for families of Soldiers” (FORSCOM Reg. 600-8, paragraph 1).
Freeland looked at the biggest challenge to his induction was the discipline required to study. He said it was difficult to give up his personal time now that he has children.
The process helped him improve and it was exciting to be
recognized by other NCO’s, said Freeland.
Reilly is from Norwich, Connecticut. He is currently assigned to Delmarva Recruiting Company, U.S. Army Recruiting Command
Reilly said he felt this was the culmination of a lot of hard work. He hopes to mentor and inspire others to be inducted because it is good for the NCO Corps.
A hurdle Reilly faced was the U.S. Army regulations.
“The biggest challenge was actually reading every single regulation,” said Reilly. “To memorize it and put it into my on words to recite back to the Sergeant Majors.”
Started in 1986, the SAMC was founded in Fort Hood.
Audie Leon Murphy was born in Kingston, Tx in June 1925. Winner of the Congressional Medal of Honor, Murphy is the single most decorated combat soldier to serve in WWII. Murphy went on to work as an actor in 44 feature-length films.
Murphy had Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and his symptoms included insomnia and depression.
Murphy was a tireless advocate for the needs of veterans. His advocacy inspired him to speak out publically about his war related mental problems after this experience. Murphy brought the problems of returning Korean and Vietnam War veterans into the public consciousness.
Then known as “Battle Fatigue”, Murphy publicly urged the United States government to consider and study the impact of PTSD. Murphy wanted more attention to be placed on the effects war has on the emotions of veterans.
Murphy’s legacy of taking care of his soldiers continues as health care benefits to address PTSD and other mental health problems are now extended to those returning from combat.
Murphy was killed in a plane crash in 1971.