Increasing levels of responsibility and imaginative ideas marked command Sergeant Major Richard C. Eagan's career. He always found innovative solutions to mission and training problems. His concern for his soldiers, training solutions, and imaginative approaches to the missions were the hallmarks of his service. The assignments to Infantry and Armor Divisions, Non-Divisional Maintenance Units and Logistics Commands, Cavalry Regiment, and the Ordnance Center and School provided him with the diversified training and opportunities to develop ordnance soldiers and represent the highest traditions of the Ordnance Corps.
After being assigned to Vietnam, he was the only Fuel and Electrical System repairman sent forward to support the non-divisional units attached to the 1st Infantry Division, and later those attached to the 25th Infantry Division. He returned to the Ordnance Center and School after being promoted to Specialist 5 and returning from Vietnam. His skills as an instructor were commended and he was soon assigned as the senior instructor for week 6, night shift, of the Fuel and Electrical System Repair Course. SP5 Eagan returned to Vietnam and was assigned as the NCOIC of the Fuel Repair Section of a General Support Maintenance Company. He was promoted to Staff Sergeant and assigned as the assistant shop foreman for the refurbishing of wheel vehicles to be transferred to the South Vietnamese Army. When the wheel vehicle mission was suddenly converted to a track vehicle mission, SSG Eagan was given the responsibility of locating repair parts and transferring them to the general support maintenance facility.
At Fort Carson, Colorado his talent as an instructor was put to good use training organizational repairman on the proper maintenance of electrical power generating equipment. As the only Ordnance soldier assigned to that course, he was instrumental in streamlining the course and aligning it with the actual equipment the soldiers would be repairing at their units.
His performance as an automotive inspector was marked by his program of on the spot repair of vehicles at the point of initial inspection resulting in reducing the existing backlog.
He returned to Fort Carson and was assigned to the 704th Maintenance Battalion. His assignment as the NCOIC for the battalion F&E repair shop was highlighted by the complete overhaul of the shop and its operation in three weeks. Training the F&E system personnel, he converted over 500 work orders to the computerized system overnight with no loss of support to the units. After being promoted to Sergeant First Class, SFC Eagan was assigned as the Repair Control Sergeant for the Heavy Maintenance Company of the 704th Maintenance Battalion. Here he organized the quality control, administration, and operations. These actions resulted in a reduction of the backlog from over 500 pieces to just over one hundred in less than two months. SFC Eagan was later selected as the Company First Sergeant.
SFC Eagan was again assigned as First Sergeant, this time to the 586th Maintenance Company in the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment. After refining the DS maintenance program, SFC Eagan was key in developing the organizational maintenance program for the Regiment. Here he earned the distinction of being selected as the first Ordnance soldier inducted in the elite Old Bill Association of the 3d ACR. The first female soldier inducted was one that SFC Eagan had trained and also an Ordnance soldier.
He was promoted to Command Sergeant Major and assigned to Aberdeen Proving Ground as the Battalion CSM of the 143d Ordnance Battalion. He was instrumental in developing the first multi-echelon-training program for Advanced Individual Training and 63B Basic Noncommissioned Officer Course students. Returning to Germany as the CSM of the 122d Main Support Battalion, 3d Armor Division, CSM Eagan continued to develop soldiers and had more inductees to the Sergeant Morales club. His proven performance resulted in his selection as the CSM for the 16th Corps Support Group, 3d COSCOM. Here, among other achievements, he coordinated the first joint Battle Damage Assessment and Repair training activity with the German Army. Ordnance Soldiers from the 8th, 19th, and 85th Maintenance Battalions trained with the German Army in Aachen, Germany. After his assignment in Europe CSM Eagan was assigned as the CSM, Division Support Command, 5th Infantry Division. He enhanced the quality of life for his soldiers and their families and was selected, over the combat arms CSM's, as the CSM, 4th Infantry Division (Rear) and Fort Polk; a significant achievement for an Ordnance Soldier. CSM Eagan took great pride in his soldiers, instilled a winning spirit, and developed camaraderie at the highest possible levels throughout his exceptional career.