A Look at America’s Newest Generation of Fighting Men and Women

Name: Sgt. Aaron Smith Unit: 148th Quartermaster Company, 240th QM Battalion, 49th QM Group

MOS: 92F – petroleum supply specialist

Time in service: four and a half years

Age: 25

Hometown: Minneapolis, Minn.

Family: wife, Melaki; son, Raequan, 9; daughters, Malaya, 6, and Aarion, 2

Background: Sgt. Smith is a Soldier who has benefited greatly in service to his country. Growing up in the inner city of Minneapolis, he said that he did some things in the ‘hood’ that he regrets: “If I was in the military, I probably wouldn’t have done them.” With his past behind him, Smith said he is a role model to his six younger brothers and aspires to be a policeman.

Pastimes: “Going to the gym, lifting weights, playing basketball, and spending time with the Family.”

Recent accomplishments: “Getting further along with my education and in four months, my wife and I would’ve been married 10 years.”

How would you describe yourself: “Determined, hard-working, goal-oriented and for my age, I think I’m a wise and knowledgeable person.”

Worst fear: “Going to Iraq, dying there and leaving my Family.”

One life-changing event: “Having my first daughter. I had my son at a young age; I was a child. I was a grown man when I had my daughter. I matured right on the spot.”

What celebrity or historical figure would you like to be: “Dr. Martin Luther King, because he changed the world, brought the country together and had some kind of influence on everybody. He’ll never be forgotten.”

Why I joined the Army: “I was working 50 hours a week to support my family, and I had to drop out of school three times. I thought it (the Army) was a good opportunity.”

The person I admire the most: “My wife. She’s been there with me through the years. I don’t know anyone more tolerant.”

The one thing I would change about the Army: “I don’t like getting up at five in the morning for PT. I would change the time.”

If I wasn’t in the Army: “I would be a police officer. They interact with people, they’re there to help.”

What I would do for my fellow Soldiers: “Cut deployment times down.”

Best thing about the Army: “Going to other countries and helping the people who really need help.”

How you would lead Soldiers: “Someone that can guide and lead troops under any conditions; someone who can train Soldiers in their image.”

What makes a Soldier successful:

“Discipline and integrity. If you’re not disciplined, you cannot get anywhere, and if you can’t do the right thing when nobody’s watching, you won’t get anywhere.”

Values: “Family, loyalty, respect.”

Motivations:

“Honestly, when I put on the uniform, I know I am able to help. Soldiers have problems and I like helping. My daughter thinks that I’m a super hero or something.”

Goals: “Earning my degree, buying a home in three years and becoming a policeman.”

Compiled by T. Anthony Bell

Editor’s note: America’s Military is a weekly column featuring military members who are committed to their profession and serve with pride. If you know a military member deserving of this recognition, call (804) 734-7190 or e-mail terrance.bell@us.army.mil