KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany — During the month of February, the Army highlights some of its outstanding leaders, past and present, as part of Black History Month. After serving in the Army as a civilian employee for nearly five decades, a leader of the Army’s 405th Field Support Brigade prepares to retire and enjoys his final month of service.
Anita Lynce, who is the Director of Transportation Base Support Operations, 405th AFSB, began her journey with the Army in 1975. As a black woman working for the Army as a civilian employee for 47 years and six months, Lynce has seen a lot of changes. But one thing that hasn’t changed is her love for the soldiers and families she’s supported for all these years.
“I love what I do, I love supporting soldiers and their families, and I’m going to miss it very much,” Lynce said.
Lynce has made helping soldiers and their families one of her career goals. For example, once a young soldier and his even younger wife came to her with marital problems. The spouse was crying and very upset, but Lynce said she could tell they cared deeply for each other. She sat with them for a few hours, empathizing with them and guiding them using her own experiences and wisdom.
“I said to the spouse ‘look, you’re new to the military so let me explain. When you hear he’s at a GI party, that means he’s in the barracks cleaning up. He’s not at a party. It’s not something you can do. It’s something he has to do with his unit,” Lynce said.
Much of it was miscommunication and misunderstandings, Lynce said.
“Terms like that mean something different to us than to a young military spouse,” she added.
Another time, Lynce’s commanding officer asked a fellow colonel and friend to stop by Lynce’s office and talk to him. Her commander knew Lynce had something special to offer and could help her.
“I heard he was about to retire and his wife decided she wanted a divorce.” said Lynce. “He kept coming back to me, and one day we were talking and I immediately understood something serious.”
“I said ‘Sir, are you okay? Some of the things you’re saying don’t seem to be okay,'” Lynce said.
Lynce sensed something was terribly wrong. She immediately called her commanding officer and told him that her friend was having suicidal thoughts.
“He came back about two weeks later and said ‘thank you, Mrs Lynce. I really like you. When I left your office that day I was in a bad place, so thank you for noticing and taking the time to reach out and help me stay on track. right track,” Lynce said.
One of the things about the Army that she said she respects and loves is how tight-knit the Army community is and how everyone takes care of each other.
While working at Fort Hood, Texas, after 9/11, there were a lot of young soldiers who needed to be deployed, Lynce said.
“A lot of them were coming straight out of basic training and advanced individual training at Fort Hood and deploying immediately,” Lynce said. “I guess they thought of me as a mother figure because a lot of them came to talk to me and they were scared to death.”
“I said ‘you’ll be fine. You have to follow what your sergeant taught you to do in your training, and you’ll be fine. Keep up your prayers, keep worshiping with God, but you’ll be fine. I said ‘you’re going to come back and see when you come back, right? I’m going to be there waiting for you, and my doors are always open,’ Lynce said.
And many of them came back and visited Lynce after their deployment. Others never came back, and it was very hard for her. Lynce treated hundreds, if not thousands, of soldiers throughout his career as if they were his own children.
“I would give my phone number to anyone who needed my help and tell them to call any time day or night,” Lynce said. “I’m a military brat – my dad served for 26 years – and I’ve been doing this for 47 and a half. If the military taught me one thing, it’s to care. I really care.
Lynce said she will miss her job and all the wonderful team members she has had the pleasure of working with over the years. She was the head of personal property at Fort Hood. She worked at the US Transportation Command. She was assigned to Fort Sill, Oklahoma; Fort Bliss, Texas; and Fort Bragg, NC She even did a tour of Japan and two tours of Germany – and much more. Lynce began her career in the military as a commissary cashier and government civilian GS-4 in 1975. And all of this knowledge and experience she gained over the years helped her succeed in her position. current and final in the Army as Director of BASOPS Transportation with the 405th AFSB.
“My team that I have now at the 405th AFSB is great, and I’ve had great teams my entire career,” she said.
As she closes an incredible chapter, Lynce said she looks forward to the next one. She will return to Killeen where it all started and where her two sons live as well as her brother and two sisters.
“One of my grandchildren is in Houston and the other is in Austin. Almost everyone is in Texas,” said Lynce, who has three grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. an aunt who is 99 and will be 100 in July. She is my only aunt on both sides of my family who is still alive. She’s also in Houston, which is only about 3 hours away, so I’ll be spending time with her as well.
Lynce said she would do volunteer work and work at her church. With a congregation of about 1,700 members, that should keep him busy. She previously served as a Sunday School teacher and superintendent for many years.
Lynce said she has had many good mentors over the years and hopes she has been a good mentor to others as well. She’s leaving the military on Black History Month with some final words of wisdom.
“You only get what you put into it,” she said of her work for the military. “You’re going to have different people with different ideas. Don’t be judgmental. Be open to learning from different people – people of different nationalities, different cultures, different backgrounds, different races, and different religious preferences. Be open to new things and new ideas.
“And listen,” she said. “I listen a lot.”
|Date posted:||02.04.2022 08:01|
|Site:||KAISERSLAUTERN, RP, DE|
|Hometown:||KILLEEN, TX, USA|
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