RICHMOND, Va. –
Darryl E. Braxton started working for the Department of Defense May 21, 1974, at the Directorate of Storage and Transportation depot in Richmond, Virginia. A few years later the depot name was changed to Defense Depot Richmond, Virginia.
Braxton remembers wanting to learn everything about Storage and Transportation at his work site. “My mentor at that time was my first supervisor Mr. Harry Stallings who knew the operation inside and out on both sides of the house (Storage and Selection, as well as the packing function to shipment).”
The material handler later transitioned to work as a Hazardous packer within the Depot's Hazardous Material Division, which he said was a very challenging and rewarding position.
As the years changed so did the Depot said Braxton. The name changed once more, this time to Defense Distribution Richmond, Virginia, which brought new goals and visions throughout DLA's distribution Depots.
In 1991, Braxton worked as a General Equipment Inspector on one of DLA's special projects in preparation of changes coming to the depot. “As we received new commodities and shipped out commodities, we continued to support the Warfighter.
He later became a Material Examiner and Identifier, working in receiving during Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm. Braxton served in the Army Reserve during that period, and after 12 years in the Army Reserve, ended his enlistment with the rank of Sgt./E-5.
In addition to his regular duties, Braxton served as President of AFGE Local 2047 (currently merged with Local 1992). Even then his focus was mission first – people always.
In March 2002, Braxton accepted a position at the Fleet Industrial Supply Center Norfolk, Virginia. He worked there for about three years until he transferred to the Naval Weapons Station Cheatham Annex (NAVSUP FISC, Williamsburg, Virginia).
After a couple of years working there, DLA took over the distribution and Braxton felt as though he was back at home. “A year after DLA took over distribution at Cheatham Annex, I applied for a position here at my current location and was accepted to work in the DLA Distribution Richmond Mapping Division.
Braxton believes that DLA has a diverse work force. “I remember when DLA saw the importance of bringing in and implementing the “Diversity in the Workplace” program,” he continued, “This was a tool for empowering the employees to come together to better serve the Warfighters, as well as respect one another and participate and understand various cultural events. This was the highlight of my career.”
Braxton said a key factor during his career, was his willingness to help out wherever and whenever the need arose in support of the Warfighter. “My thoughts and prayers have always been focused on the men and women in uniform as well as my co-workers,” he said.
During his tenure, Braxton was afforded the opportunity to travel for duty, which he appreciated since it gave him an opportunity to meet DLA counterparts in other areas. “Working with, and meeting, other DLA employees from different locations gave me a sense of pride and belonging with the DLA family. These memories will forever be etched in my heart.”