Staff. Sgt. Demetrious Davis

Staff. Sgt. Demetrious Davis (Sgt. 1st Class Henry Gundacker, 10th Support Group Public Affairs)

The adage, “If at first, you don’t succeed, try, try again”, stays at the forefront of the mind of Staff. Sgt. Demetrious Davis, the 10th Support Group intel section NCOIC, as he navigates his career and life.

Recently, Davis traveled to Sagami Depot, 25 miles Southwest of Tokyo, to compete in the U.S. Army Japan’s week-long Expert Soldier Badge Competition. This was Davis’ second attempt to earn the prestigious title.

The competition was comprised of 34 mental and physical challenges divided into four phases. Phase 1: ESB Physical Fitness Assessment, Phase 2: Land Navigation, Phase 3: Individual Testing Stations with weapons lanes, medical lanes and patrol lanes, Phase 4: 12-mile foot march.

10 out of 33 U.S. Army Soldiers and 14 out of 19 Japan Ground Self-Defense Force members earned their expert badges. This was the first time in the history of the competition that JGSDF members competed.

According to Davis, the most challenging part of the event was land navigation. The most fun was going through the weapons lane where he was tested on nine various weapons systems.

Davis is known as an unstoppable force in his section. He competed in the ESB in 2023 but came up short. Instead of being deterred, Davis doubled down on his goal and went for it again.

“Last year I didn’t make it,” said Davis. “Last year, I went because I just wanted to see what it was about. I found it fun and rewarding. This year, I decided to go again, because I like to challenge myself. Usually, when I don’t accomplish something, it hurts my pride. It didn’t feel great last year not getting it,” Davis explained.

Growing up, Davis described himself as a kid who wasn’t outgoing or competitive. “The moment I joined the military, I found this sense of wanting to push myself. “It started when I arrived at Fort. Cavasos. They were running an air assault school. On my first attempt at the prerequisites, I failed. I attempted twice more after that until I got into air assault school,” he explained. “There is a sense of satisfaction that you get when you overcome these obstacles”.

Although Davis feels he is internally motivated to tackle challenges that come his way, he credits a few external sources for inspiration.

“Command Sgt. Maj. Drury gave me a pep talk before we went out. She told me how much faith she had in me. It put a weight on my shoulders in a good way. It gave me more pep to go out and get it done,” Davis said.

His other motivation comes from reading Batman comics. “Batman is in really good shape. He is very smart and a good leader. He is the perfect role model. Any situation he gets put in, he overcomes and that’s how I feel like an NCO should be. NCOs must be resilient and flexible. NCOs have to overcome,” said Davis.

Other NCOs in Davis’s section look up to him as the standard bearer.

“He is the senior enlisted in the S2 and handles all administrative actions for the shop,” said Staff Sgt. Nicholas Waters, 10th SG intel analyst. “His role in the S2 is actually pretty generic in terms of what is expected of him. However, his character is a different story. SSG Davis goes above and beyond to motivate the shop in terms of professionalism and fitness. He always ensures we are doing the right thing and completing daily tasks, but adding life to what we are doing. Our role as a whole can be pretty boring on a day-to-day basis, but Staff. Sgt. Davis finds a way to make it meaningful and interesting. For fitness, I have to say that if you’re looking for a physical training session that will leave questioning your state of fitness; call Staff Sgt. Davis and he’ll set you right. There’s a reason the S2 has the highest ACFT score within 10th Support Group and that is because of him. He has gone outside of the shop by educating the organization on why fitness is important and has provided tools on how Soldiers can improve themselves. He adds to the mission by just being at the right place, at the right time, and with the right attitude all the time. He volunteers to go on missions because he knows he can make a difference. Staff Sgt. Davis definitely embodies all the Army Values, all the time, and I am glad I get to call him my NCO and my friend,” Waters explained.

Davis’s future plans are to finish his degree in applied sciences, Intel Operations and get the National Tactical Strength and Conditioning Certification.

It feels pretty good to have this accomplishment. I feel like Soldiers can be comfortable coming to me and I can provide information and training on all the tasks to the Soldiers in my unit. An NCO’s job is to train and now I feel like with this badge, I am a better NCO,” Davis said.

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