Eight years ago, the Army’s 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne) moved from Fort Bragg, North Carolina, to Eglin Air Force Base, bringing a major unit from another branch of the military service into what for years had been an Air Force-centered community.
That anomaly was perhaps more accentuated by the fact that Special Forces troops are, as a matter of both training and discipline, not particularly eager or motivated to talk much about what they do.
“One of our mottos is ‘the quiet professionals,’” Col. Patrick Colloton, who recently completed his first year as commander of the 2,500-troop 7th Group, said in an interview this week.
“Part of what we do, if we do it successfully, is not leaving a big footprint,” Colloton said. “So in some ways, we are our own worst enemy, because it’s not in our nature to self-advertise what we do. So we don’t have as strong a message as we could in terms of encouraging knowledge of the population in terms of what we do.”