SGM Retires After Three Decades of Army Leadership

by Brigitte Rox, CCAD Public Affairs

Photos by Kiana Allen (RELEASED).

Corpus Christi, TX (August 6, 2015) – With 32 years of unyielding support to the United States Army, Corpus Christi Army Depot’s (CCAD) Sergeant Major, Martin D. Dickinson, retired from the depot on July 23, 2015.

The Sergeant Major transferred responsibility of the helicopter maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) depot to SGM Steven D. Odom.

“It has been my pleasure serving you as the Depot Sergeant Major,” Dickinson wrote in a departing message to the workforce. “Your professionalism and commitment to the defense of our nation is evident in everything that we do and I am proud to have had the opportunity to serve as a member of this great team.”

Martin Dickinson joined the Army in 1983 when he was only 17. After serving as a rifleman in Germany for two years, he reenlisted as a 67T UH-60A helicopter repairer and rose through the ranks as a leader in aviation. He started as a UH-60 crew chief in Korea, followed by assignments as Flight Platoon Sergeant for the 101st Airborne Division and as the First Sergeant and Command Sergeant Major (CSM) for the 82nd Airborne in Fort Bragg, NC. In 2007, he was appointed as the Aviation Systems Training Department Sergeant Major at the US Army Aviation Logistics School in Fort Eustis before getting picked up at Pentagon at the Aviation Directorate Army Headquarters. He returned to Korea for a brief tour in 2012 before joining CCAD in 2013.

The son of an aerial photographer for the Navy, Dickinson credits his military success to his father, who sat front row, center at his retirement ceremony. “My father established a family values system that actually mirrors what the Army Values are.
“That was my foundation and that was why I was able to do 32 years of service for our country….It’s all I know….That’s probably why the Army came so easily for me.”

The Sergeant Major, who had been known by the depot as “calm and collected,” claims that his early days as a leader were anything but.

“[Those] aren’t traits that I typically had coming up through the ranks, especially when I was a platoon sergeant and first sergeant, but that’s how my leadership was,” Dickinson said. “I think they’re that way because they’ve been through a lot. They knew what was important.”

After receiving the Legion of Merit as the consummate award for his three decades of service, he touched on the nation’s Veterans, and their profound effect on his life and identity.

“I’m proud of the fact that I can say that a veteran trained me. I’ll always be grateful that those warriors, past and present, have helped me become who I am. They taught me to lead from the front, to lead by example.”

SGM Martin D. Dickinson officially retires from the Army on August 31, 2015 but his commitment to serve may never end. He is one of those who truly understands the creed: Once a Soldier, Always a Soldier.

 

Designated a Center of Industrial and Technical Excellence for rotary wing aircraft, Corpus Christi Army Depot ensures aviation readiness through overhaul, repair, modification, retrofit, testing, recapitalization, and modernization of helicopters, engines and components. This effort includes world-wide on-site field maintenance teams, analytical crash investigations and chemical material process facilities. CCAD serves as a depot training base for active duty Army, National Guard, and reserve units. CCAD, as South Texas' largest industrial employer, employs more than 5500 personnel and contractors providing an overall economic impact of more than $1.14 Billon to the local community.