The 2019 Champions of Fort Campbell induction ceremony was recently held in McAuliffe Hall to honor three people who have gone above and beyond in their efforts to “champion” Fort Campbell and its operations.
This year's honorees were Sandy Cochran, Donald Cochran, and Charlie Koon. Major General Andrew P. Poppas and Command Sergeant Major Todd W. Sims oversaw the induction.
“When General Campbell started Champions of Fort Campbell, he recognized community leaders and began putting their names and faces on this wall,” Koon said. “When I was notified that you wanted me to fill a space on this wall, well it's pretty intimidating. I don't know if you've ever looked to see who is there--Jack Turner, Mr. Kimbrough, the Harpels and Mr. Freeman. It's almost impossible to feel worthy, and I am truly honored to be a part of this.”
Beginning with Traci and Lexi, his wife and daughter, Koon thanked a long list of people whom he felt helped him earn this recognition.
“I call all of the champions the catalysts of the community,” said Major General Andrew P. Poppas.. “They are the pillars who have been here, historically. They precede me. They have embraced our mission. They are just as important as the soldiers themselves who execute our mission. They understand exactly what we are being asked to do, and they set the conditions for our success.”
Story & Photography by Tony Centonze
For more images from this local VIP event, and many others, please visit our digital issue here.