Story and photo by Spc. Andrew Ingram
1st Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs Office, 4th Infantry Division
Sgt. Untabious Philyaw calls service a way of life.
A water treatment specialist with Company A, 4th Brigade Support Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Philyaw received the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal during a ceremony at the “Raider” Brigade headquarters, Dec. 14.
The noncommissioned officer earned the award for his countless hours of service with the No DUI Colorado Springs program during the past 12 months.
“I’ve volunteered with charities before, but this opportunity really stuck out to me,” Philyaw said. “Many of the individuals I’ve picked up are military, so I’m not just helping out my community, I’m helping my fellow servicemembers make wise decisions.”
The No DUI Colorado Springs program provides safe transportation for individuals who have been drinking and should not drive themselves home.
Working primarily Thursday-Saturday nights, Philyaw often volunteered until 3 a.m., before he caught a few hours of sleep and conducted physical training with his unit at 6:30 a.m.
“It could be very difficult at times, but I feel it is important for me to honor my commitment to the organization and help all of those I can,” he said. “My wife, Renee, has really motivated me to keep involved. I may be the one getting an award, but she is out there just as often as I am.”
Before presenting the award to Philyaw, Nonie Rispin, director of No DUI Colorado Springs, commended the Soldier for his dedication to keeping the people of Colorado Springs safe.
“He’s my go-to guy,” Rispin said. “Whenever I need an extra hand, he is there. He always puts in the extra mile to make sure the people in this city are safe. I can’t express how proud and grateful I am to have him as a member of my team.”
Commanders present the MOVSM to servicemembers who perform substantial volunteer service to the local community, above and beyond their required duties.
Col. Joel Tyler, commander, 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div., expressed gratitude for his Soldier’s commitment to the safety and well-being of the people of his adopted community and pride in the example set by Philyaw.
“The acts of this Soldier have really captured the Raider spirit of service,” Tyler said. “To have a Soldier like Sgt. Philyaw in our ranks, who contributes to the community, is really something special. He’s an example for other Soldiers to emulate and he’s the kind of Soldier we need to hold on to.”
Every Soldier should take the opportunity to volunteer in his community, said Philyaw.
“We all have something to give,” Philyaw said. “Everyone needs a little help sometimes and we are blessed with so much. How could we not help?”