July 4, 2012 - Sgt. Jeremiah Hampton, a sniper team leader with Scout Platoon, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment finds time for a smile during a convoy in Zharay district, Kandahar province, Afghanistan. Hampton is known to many soldiers for having an upbeat and laid-back attitude. Courtesy Photo
| ||ZHARAY PROVINCE, Afghanistan (07/26/2012) - A sniper by trade, a carpenter by hobby, a construction worker since youth but a soldier none the less. Sgt. Jeremiah C. Hampton, a sniper team leader with Scout Platoon, Headquarters and Headquarters Company is known by many titles.|
“People have called me many things, good and bad, because I'm that guy that will step in and try to take charge,” Hampton said.
During a recent mission, Hampton took charge to help when vehicles in a convoy became stuck near Combat Outpost Salim Aka. Soldiers laughed when they saw Hampton run up to one of the bulldozers and pull out the inexperienced driver who buried the dozer in the mud
“Our leaders did the best they could to direct the drivers,” he said, “but this was one of those situations where an experienced equipment operator can help dictate a different situation.”
His unit, Scout Plt., HHC, 1st Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, is very familiar with his easy-going personality. The unit knows that when things need to be done, especially driving equipment and carpentry projects, Hampton doesn't hesitate to get things started.
“I have been driving heavy-equipment for six years,” Hampton said. “I have also worked and been around construction and carpentry since I was 13-years-old, so I know a lot about those things.”
Talking about driving heavy equipment sparked an old memory that he recalled as if it just happened.
“When I was a specialist at Fort Campbell, I helped pull out roughly 60 trucks with a bulldozer when our sister unit's trucks got stuck in a vehicle staging area after it rained for a week straight,” he said. “You can't blame anyone because it was Mother Nature's doing.”
Hampton is also called his unit's unofficial carpenter since he takes charge in nearly every construction project wherever he goes. His work around Combat Outpost Salim Aka is appreciated by his fellow soldiers.
“With the help of other soldiers here, I built the guard towers, a shower-hut, restroom facility and shade areas,” Hampton said. “I try to help the soldiers maintain positive attitudes as they continue to work hard to complete missions.”
He said it's unfortunate that his title of a sniper, which he is most proud of, isn't frequently used because he performs other duties for his unit. Units often need to fill positions with a body no matter what the soldier's trade or training.
“I haven't had the opportunity to pull my sniper-rifle out since being at COP Salim Aka,” he continued.
Hampton is from Milton, Fla., a small town outside of Pensacola. He joined the Army in 1996 and served until 2002 when he left the military to work at a family business. After joint decision with his wife of 11 years, Ericka Hampton, with whom he has a 5-years-old daughter, he rejoined the Army in 2008.
“Even though I can't act as a sniper right now, I re-enlisted so obviously I enjoy my military career.”
Hampton stated that above all else, he appreciates the fact that no matter the task or mission, there is always help from fellow soldiers to get things accomplished.
By Army Spc. Tyler Meister
Provided through DVIDS
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