Sergeant Major Samuel Heyward Jr. a native of Charleston, S.C., completed recruit training as a private first class (meritoriously) at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, S.C., in September of 1987. Upon graduation he transferred to Communication Electronics School in Twentynine Palms, Calif. While there he attended the Field Radio Operator’s Course and graduated in December of 1987.
In January of 1988 then Private First Class Heyward reported to 2nd Marine Division for duty as a radio operator. He was then assigned to Charlie Battery, 1st Battalion, 10th Marine Regiment. He held various billets as a radio operator: MIMMS clerk; cryptographic equipment noncommissioned officer; assistant radio chief and battery guide.
In September of 1988 then Lance Corporal Heyward deployed to the Mediterranean with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit while temporarily assigned to Echo Company, 2nd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment. Lance Corporal Heyward was meritoriously promoted to corporal in June of 1989 and participated in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm with Regimental Landing Team 2.
In February of 1992 then Corporal Heyward transferred to Sheppard Air Force Base, Wichita Falls, Texas, for the Antenna Systems Installation & Maintenance Specialist Course (Lineman School). After completion of the school Corporal Heyward transferred to Support Company, 8th Communications Battalion, 2nd Surveillance Reconnaissance Intelligence Group for duty as a construction linemen. In July of 1992 he was promoted to the rank of sergeant.
In October of 1994 then Sergeant Heyward transferred to Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, S.C., for duties as a drill instructor, senior drill instructor and company operations chief with India Company, 3rd Recruit Training Battalion.
In May of 1997 Sergeant Heyward transferred to Marine Barracks, Ground Defense Security Force, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. In November of 1997 Sergeant Heyward was promoted to the rank of staff sergeant. In April of 1999 he transferred to 10th Marine Regiment for duty as the Regimental Wire Chief and Information System Management Chief. In March of 2001 Staff Sergeant Heyward was promoted to the rank of Gunnery Sergeant.
In August of 2002 then Gunnery Sergeant Heyward transferred to Headquarters and Support Battalion, Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., for duty as Outside Plant Chief, Base Telephone. In January of 2004 Gunnery Sergeant Heyward was frocked to the rank of first sergeant. In April of 2004 he assumed duty as first sergeant of India Battery, 3rd Battalion, 12th Marine Regiment, which was assigned to 5th Battalion, 10th Marine Regiment in support of the Unit Deployment Program. In August of 2007 First Sergeant Heyward assumed duty as First Sergeant of Headquarters Battery, 3rd Battalion, 10th Marine Regiment.
In December of 2007 First Sergeant Heyward was frocked to the rank of sergeant major and transferred to Recruiting Station New York to assume the post of the Sergeant Major of Recruiting Station New York, 1st Marine Corps District.
In March of 2011 Sergeant Major Heyward transferred to Marine Security Force Battalion, Kings Bay, Ga., for duty as the battalion sergeant major. In April of 2013 Sergeant Major Heyward transferred to the 1st Marine Corps District for duty as the district sergeant major.
Sergeant Major Heyward’s personal decorations include: the Meritorious Service Medal, Navy & Marine Corps Commendation Medal with gold star in lieu of second award; the Navy & Marine Corps Achievement Medal with gold star in lieu of second award; and a Combat Action Ribbon.