Secretary of the Army visits Fort Hood

Posted at 10:04 PM, Apr 18, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-03 15:20:09-04

The Secretary of the Army made his first visit to Fort Hood since getting sworn in in November.

Mark Esper has served our country in nearly every capacity: in the Army, the National Guard, the Army reserve, working for the Pentagon and on Capitol Hill. He was most recently a senior executive at Raytheon Company in Government Relations.

"A day doesn't go by where I don't reflect on one of those experiences," Esper said. 

In his new position as Secretary of the Army, he feels it's vital to reacquaint himself with the Army.

"The units here, III Corps itself is on the cutting edge front-line forces, so it's important for me to get that complete perspective as to where we are in regard to again combat capability and readiness all the way through to family readiness and how we're taking care of our soldiers," Esper added. 

Esper spent the day with Fort Hood leaders taking part in everything from physical training, or PT, with a military police battalion to visiting motor pools and getting an update on barrack construction projects.

"This is obviously a very big base with 39,000 plus soldiers... and also a very important one," Esper said. 

He mentioned there is even a possibility of Fort Hood growing.

"Whether we're talking about adding artillery back at the Division level... obviously, I think the Fort is in the mix so to speak for an SFAB, one of many," Esper added.

Modernization is one of the Secretary's top priorities.

"Long-range precision fires or next-generation combat vehicle, I think Fort Hood and the units here will be big beneficiaries of those procurement efforts," Esper said.

He also believes Fort Hood is worthy of additional investment.

"III Corps big and integral to our war plans and units like the 1s Cavalry, we have to continue to work to improve their readiness, their lethality and their deployability," Esper added.

Secretary Esper will visit Fort Bliss in El Paso Thursday.

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