RSS NCOIC Gives Up More Than Long Hours to Succeed
By SSgt. Daniel Jones
| | February 15, 2001
RSS THREE RIVERS, Pa. --
Marine recruiters are known to sacrifice a lot for the recruiting effort. Whether it be time with their families, hours of sleep or even meals, each recruiter knows what it takes to get the job done.
That's why for one NCOIC, the sacrifices went a little further.
Staff Sgt. Eugene Pido, NCOIC for RSS Three Rivers, made a small wager with Staff Sgt. John B. Robinson, one of his recruiters. Instead of putting his neck on the line, Pido put his hair. If Robinson could write five contracts in the month of December, Pido would let Robinson give him a "high and tight."
Five contracts later, Pido?s hair is a little shorter.
"It didn't even seem like I was writing five contracts," Robinson said. "If this starts catching on, it'll make recruiting more fun."
"This puts the fun back into the job and makes it more exciting," said Pido, a Munhall, Pa. native.
"He really kept me on track," said Robinson, who stopped at nothing to ensure he wrote five contracts. "One of my PTADers even referred his own wife, who ended up being my fifth contract."
Pido's leadership, while sometimes unconventional, is always effective. This kind of leadership has earned him RS Pittsburgh's Co-Recruiter of the Year for 2000 and a trip to Officers Candidate School, as he has been accepted for Warrant Officer.
"I'm glad I came out on recruiting duty," said Pido, a 14-year veteran. "I sacrificed everything, but professionally it has helped me more than any other job."
Pido will be leaving for OCS Feb. 22, but admits he will miss some aspects of recruiting.
"Seeing a young man or woman come back from boot camp is one of the biggest thrills for me," he said. "We also had a young man who dropped out of school and was going nowhere. We got him back in school and he eventually graduated with honors."
According to Pido, recruiters need to keep their sense of humor and do what ever it takes to stay motivated.
"One of the funniest things I can remember was when we had a storm and the power went out. I sat here and finished an enlistment package with a flashlight."
Although he was successful, Pido says it wasn't always easy.
"I had a difficult time adjusting to the pace of the job," he said. "There is a sense of urgency 24 hours a day seven days a week."
"I take a lot of pride in being a recruiter," he continued. "I'm doing the job that no one else wants to do."
As he exchanges his stripes for bars, Pido plans to make his return to the fleet filled with great expectations.
"I'm looking forward to being back in the fleet and working with those quality young men and women that I put in the Marine Corps."
Upon completion of OCS, Pido is looking to head to Okinawa and offers this advice to new Marines.
"Take everything the Marine Corps has to offer, pursue the programs and always reach as high as you can."