210422-A-ZN169-252.jpgBy Robert Timmons, Fort Jackson Public Affairs

Fort Jackson inducted five into its Hall of Fame in a ceremony held April 22 at the NCO Club. The inductees made up the combined 2020-2021 HOF class.

The post’s hall of fame was established to “recognize and honor persons who have made an indelible mark on the Fort Jackson community.”

Each inductee will be included on the Hall of Fame Wall in the post headquarters.

The photos on the wall won’t be enough for the post to thank them, said Fort Jackson Commander Brig. Gen. Milford H. “Beags” Beagle Jr. It "won’t be enough to pay a bill for everything that you’ve done every single year. But know that we greatly appreciate the fact that you've continually given, that you continue to sacrifice, and your selflessness is beyond reproach. My hope is that today comes close.”

The 2020-2021 class was comprised of:

Retired Brig. Gen. James H. Schwitters, former post commander;

Madelyn Mercado, a long-time Army Community Services stalwart;

Mike Good, former head of the post’s Equal Employment Opportunity Office;

Dan Beatty, former Army Training Center chief of staff;

Command Sgt. Maj. Philip Blaisdell, senior enlisted leader for 3rd Battalion, 13th Infantry Regiment and the Leader Training Brigade; and

Joe Pinner, long-time local television personality

Schwitters was inducted for his multiple contributions to Fort Jackson including outcomes-based training, incorporating athletic trainers into units and advancements in marksmanship and battle drill training. He also led the increase in training capabilities by activating additional Basic Combat Training battalions, two Reserve BCT battalions and the addition of a sixth company to each unit.

Mercado was instrumental in saving Soldiers thousands of dollars by exposing unnecessary life insurance policies from a particular insurance company.

After the ceremony, Mercado said she was very thankful for this opportunity and “shocked” to be included. “I love Fort Jackson and I love what I did.”

Good was credited for Fort Jackson winning the 1992 Department of the Army Disability Program Award, improving ties to local organizations and improving the “morale, cohesiveness and quality of life” for the post’s civilian employees.

Beatty had spent a portion of his military career on Fort Jackson where he was a battalion commander, the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, or G3; and the ATC chief of staff. Among his accomplishments were implementing the Army’s Master Fitness Training Course in three months, and directing the redesign of Fort Jackson’s vision.

Blaisdell was “instrumental in the development of the Victory Forge model of training, which was the culminating field exercise for trainees.” He was also instrumental in saving Fort Jackson Soldiers and Families by coordinating with the South Carolina National Guard to bring in water purification teams during the 2015 flooding. Blaisdell also helped implement the Expert Soldier Badge while serving in the LTB.

Pinner, who had been a long-time standard in Columbia, South Carolina broadcast journalism, was a Fort Jackson Soldier from 1958-1959 where he managed the Armed Forces Radio Station (WFJX). He has been the narrator of numerous on-post events, and lent his voice to the Soldier Ceremony.

Cutline: Fort Jackson Commander Brig. Gen. Milford H. 'Beags' Beagle Jr. places a ribbon around the neck of Joe Pinner during Pinner's induction into the Fort Jackson Hall of Fame April 22 at the NCO Club on post. (Photo Credit: Robert Timmons)