As the Army celebrated its 235th birthday on June 14th, a small ceremony was held in the Pentagon naming the Ground Soldier System in honor of World War II Medal of Honor recipient COL Robert B. Nett. The idea is similar to the Abrams tank and Bradley fighting vehicle. Not to trivialize the selection but we are sure it didn’t hurt that COL Nett had a cyber-esque name. But, truth be told, COL Nett was one hell of a man and one hell of a warrior. It’s a great honor for both him and the program.
“One of the things we discussed … was that we knew we wanted to maintain a warrior ethos, “COL Will Riggins, PM Soldier Warrior said. “We knew we wanted to honor a great American hero. We knew that we wanted it to be a maneuver leader. This is a leader system — to make them more effective. So it was a pretty easy choice.”
According to an Army press release, COL Nett, who died in 2008, enlisted in the Army in 1940, at the age of 17. He served until 1978, and attained the rank of colonel during his service. It was because of his actions during World War II, while serving as part of the Philippines Campaign, that he was awarded the Medal of Honor.
On Dec. 14, 1944, Nett was serving as a lieutenant in the Philippines. He served as part of Company E, 305th Infantry Regiment, 77th Infantry Division. Nett commanded Company E in an attack against a reinforced battalion of Japanese that had held up the American advance for two days. Nett led the assault against the enemy soldiers.
While engaged with the enemy, Nett managed to kill seven Japanese using his rifle and bayonet. Despite being seriously wounded, he continued to lead his Soldiers. He was wounded an additional two times while attempting to achieve their objective.
The Nett Warrior system is currently undergoing developmental testing of 60 systems from three vendors and is expected to enter service in 2013.
Tags: COL Robert B. Nett