CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. --
Not much can send goose bumps up the arm of a battle-hardened Marine better than watching a four-man color guard marching to the rhythm of the drums at the head of the formation of hundreds of troops.
This job is not easy to acquire though, and those who desire to bear the National Ensign and organizational colors have to endure a very rigorous selection process.
Sgt. Calvin D. Williams Jr., was recently appointed the color sergeant for 2nd Marine Logistics Group, a duty which is upheld by a person who embodies the warrior ethos of honor, courage and commitment.
This assignment is earned by a Marine who reflects the precision, sharpness and professionalism of the entire unit.
“I was very proud the command even considered me for the position,” the Macon, Ga., native explained. “It is a very challenging position, especially because we are the face of the [2nd MLG], and I am responsible to maintain that image.”
The selection process included a detailed check of each Marine’s service background and an interview led by the command sergeant major and the outgoing color sergeant.
“A color sergeant has to be a leader of Marines, and a person who is able to function on his own with minimum supervision,” expressed Sgt. Maj. William T. Stables, the sergeant major responsible for selecting Williams. “I look for the 14 leadership traits in the Marine … I also want to see confidence and intelligence when he speaks.”
Williams was one of six Marines qualified to compete for the position and interviewed by Stables.
“I think one of the things that made me stand out the most for this assignment was my confidence, enthusiasm and how seriously I take this job,” Williams added. “The day I walked in for the interview, I knew I was going to be the color sergeant.”
Williams is not new to this sort of task. He was also the color sergeant for Combat Logistics Regiment 2, a billet he held for nearly six months.
“I know this job is a big deal,” Williams said. “A lot of people don’t understand how much attention to detail and effort goes into being a color sergeant.”
Williams also explained his drive to do this job doesn’t only come from his desire to improve his career and have more responsibilities, he says it extends far beyond the call of duty.
“One time colors were playing. Right after, I heard this [staff noncommissioned officer] screaming at this Marine because he didn’t render the proper salute,” Williams explained. “One of the things I heard him say to the Marine that stuck out the most was: ‘this is your time to honor those who have died and been severely wounded defending this country.’
“That impacted me greatly,” Williams concluded. “Also my best friend was wounded in combat, so this is what I do to honor him and all others who fought for this country before me.”
Williams understands the responsibilities and high expectations bestowed upon him by the 2nd MLG command, and as he explained, he will continue to serve and represent his unit with the best of his abilities.