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    NY Air National Guard Airmen "dive into" German proficiency badge test

    NY Air National Guardsmen "dive" into German badge competition

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Benjamin German | New York Air National Guard Senior Airman Dominic Scaringe and Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Valk...... read more read more



    Story by Tech. Sgt. Catharine Schmidt 

    New York National Guard

    GLENVILLE, N.Y.--Airmen with the New York Air National Guard’s 109th Airlift Wing dove right into the swim portion of the German Armed Forces Proficiency Badge competition at the nearby Glenville, N.Y. YMCA on June 16, uniform and all.

    The German military award tests a Soldiers physical fitness, marksmanship skills, and swimming ability. The German Armed Forces Proficiency Badge is one of the few approved foreign awards American service members can wear.

    The Airmen completed the first part of the test—a physical fitness—was completed on June 4.

    The goal for this second portion of the competition was to swim 100 meters, while wearing the Airman Battle Uniform, in under 4 minutes.

    “To be honest, I haven’t swam in a lap pool since I was probably 10, so I was a little nervous coming into it,” said Staff Sgt. Amanda Cimorelli, 109th Operations Support Squadron. “The first couple laps were OK but by Round 2 I started to get a little fatigued in the shoulders. The uniform wears you down. It was definitely a challenge.”

    According to Airmen with the 109th Security Forces Squadron who have competed for the badge previously, the swim portion always seems to be the toughest part of the competition, and many don’t make it to the next phase.

    This time, six out of the eight swimmers were able to accomplish the feat and will move on to the pistol qualification portion at Stewart Air National Guard Base, Newburgh, New York. The competition will end with a ruck march; participants will need to march between 3.75 and 7.5 miles while carrying 33 pounds.

    The first phase, the basic fitness test, required the Airmen to complete 11x10 meter sprints, a flexed arm hang and finish off with a 1,000 meter run.

    “I think it’s excellent for us. It gets us out of our element and pushes us to do something different other than just the yearly PT test,” Cimorelli said.

    “This event fosters individual achievement and at the same time unit cohesion,” said Maj. William Furmanski, 109th Security Forces Squadron commander. “Although it’s an individual award, it really is a team effort; you can see that everyone is pushing each other.”

    The German Armed Forces Proficiency Badge is a military decoration of the Bundeswehr, the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Germany. The decoration can be awarded to all German Soldiers, and Allied Soldiers may also be awarded the badge.

    109th participants will be scored in all phases of the competition and are competing for the gold, silver or bronze award.



    Date Taken: 06.16.2016
    Date Posted: 06.20.2016 10:41
    Story ID: 201782
    Location: GLENVILLE, NY, US 
    Hometown: SCOTIA, NY, US

    Web Views: 135
    Downloads: 0