Charlie Company, 4th/47th Battalion, 2nd Brigade
Introduction When I first met Sergeant Lynn David Crockett during early June of 1966, I was intimidated, fearful and in awe of this man. His mere presence and stature seemed to cause the sky to darken. He was over 6′-6″ tall, rugged, tough and seriously intense. From the creases in his fatigues, to the curve in the bill of his hat, to the polished brass on his belt, to the shine of his boots, his uniform was absolutely perfect. He could have easily been the model for G.I. Joe!
My first personal meeting with Sergeant Crockett occurred one morning when I needed to sharpen my pencil prior to the day’s classes. We were in formation in front of our Custer Hill barrack’s at Fort Riley and I was told that the nearest pencil sharpener was in the Company Clerk’s office. I ran back into the building to what I thought was the Company Clerk’s office and I saw a sharpener mounted to a desk, so I proceeded to sharpen my pencil. I slowly became aware of impending doom hanging over my head , when this voice bigger than the man I faced surrounded me and verbally beat me to a pulp. “WHO IN THE HELL DID I THINK I WAS? WHO GAVE ME PERMISSION TO GRACE HIS PRESENCE, LET ALONE USE HIS PENCIL SHARPENER?!” This went on for what seemed forever before he finally told me to get my wimp civilian butt out of his office and NEVER enter his space again without permission! That was my first lesson on the importance of structure and discipline that makes a good soldier and a great Army.
As we civilians became soldiers, First Sergeant Crockett bestowed the respect and dignity that we earned. He had done the job that was required of him and his cadre of trainers. He nurtured us and guided our metamorphosis from young men to soldiers and responsible citizens. We thank you Sarge, for the support, respect and growth that you guided us through. You were the consummate professional and you did your job fully. We just hope that you are as proud of the soldiers you turned us into as we are as grateful to you.
Bill Varsafsky – December 13, 2002