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    Southern Division and HHC, 75th Training Command Soldiers Compete for Best Warrior Title



    Story by Lt. Col. Steven Johnston 

    75th Innovation Command

    Texas - Ten warriors, representing the 75th Training Command’s Headquarters and Headquarters Company and Southern Division, competed in the division’s Best Warrior Competition from February 14 to 17 at Camp Swift, Texas, for the title of Best Warrior. The winning participants will compete in the 75th Training Command’s Best Warrior Competition, beginning on April 2.

    For Southern Division, 1st Brigade’s Sgt. 1st Class Ashley Noiske, of Montgomery, Minn., claimed the title in the senior non-commissioned officer division. Noiske is assigned to 1st Brigade, Southern Division. Sgt. David Blalock, of Houston, Texas, claimed the Best Warrior title in the junior NCO category. Blalock represents Southern Division HHC.

    Two winners were also declared for HHC, 75th Training Command. Sgt. Christopher Moody, of New Boston, Texas, won the NCO category, and Spc. Dinesh Amagai, of Dallas, Texas, took the junior enlisted title.

    “The best warrior competition is a 100 percent noncommissioned officer driven event that is fully supported and implemented from the Department of the Army. The trust given to the NCO corps to plan, prepare, and run a very challenging and warrior-based skill competition demonstrates the full support from officers appointed over every NCO, at all levels throughout the Army, to carry out and implement a high-visibility competition down to the smallest detail, with little to no officer involvement,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Wayne Brewster, command sergeant major of 75th Training Command’s Southern Division. “The Best Warrior Competition, if done correctly, will build morale, esprit de corps, and camaraderie in any unit across the Army. All three of these cornerstones will build complete readiness throughout the USAR.”

    The multi-day Best Warrior Competition measures the skill level, mental stamina and physical fitness of each competitor as they demonstrate proficiency on a variety of Soldier skills. At the Southern Division competition, each of the 17 missions encountered by the competitors was tied to a fictional scenario involving an enemy in a South American country.

    Competitions are held throughout the Army. Contestants compete at the unit level, and winners continue to advance until they reach the Army-wide competition. Winning contestants in the Southern Division competition must win the 75th Training Command title, in order to move on to the US Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition.

    After an initial safety brief, the competition started out with a written exam to test the competitor’s general knowledge of basic warrior skills. From there, the competitors moved on to a “mystery mission,” unknown to the participants prior to the start of the competition. For that mission, competitors were asked to disassemble their assigned M16A2 assault rifles. Next, they were blindfolded and told to place the rifle parts in a plastic tub. Competitors were then led, blindfolded, into a completely dark closet, where they were required to put together their rifles in the dark.

    The second day of competition began early with an Army Physical Fitness Test on the track surrounding the Bastrop High School football field. Once the APFT was complete, competitors changed into their field uniforms and spent the rest of the day testing basic rifle marksmanship skills on firing ranges. The morning was spent on the “zero” range. Warriors adjusted the sights on their assigned rifles, based on the rifle’s performance firing at 25-meter targets on the zero range. Then, the warriors competed for the highest score on the rifle range during daylight hours. On this range, competitors fired at pop-up targets, which pop up at varying distances at random intervals.

    Next, competitors were walked through a reflexive fire competition. In this exercise, warriors fired their rifles while moving forward toward the targets. The last mission of the second day was the night fire range. Contestants fired their rifles at the pop-up targets after the sun went down, making target acquisition much more difficult.

    The third day began with a 9-mile ruck march in the early morning dark. Contestants were required to carry a rifle and a rucksack on their back, weighing a minimum of 40 pounds. After a brief rest and time to care for aching feet, the warriors were ferried to the next training site in Blackhawk helicopters, courtesy of the US Army Reserve’s 1st Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment. Contestants were then evaluated on how well they treated and evacuated mock Soldiers with battlefield injuries. Each contestant evaluated and field-dressed the mock wounds, then used radios to call for an evacuation of the casualty.

    A test of land navigation skills rounded out the third day. Competitors navigated on foot to various points on the land navigation course, demonstrating their ability to move about the battlefield using a map and compass. Each contestant was required to pass both the daytime and night land navigation events before retiring for the night.

    Warriors competed on an obstacle course to begin the last day. Each competitor contended for the best time and most correctly performed obstacles on the course. Next, they changed into their Army Service Uniform, the Army’s dress uniform, to sit before an evaluation board of senior ranking noncommissioned officers. Each competitor, in turn, answered difficult questions on a wide range of topics, from basic warrior skills to Army regulations.

    The competition ended with an awards banquet, at which the winners were announced. Each winner received a trophy, presented by the guest speaker, Col. Martha Wilkins, Southern Division chief of staff, and Southern Division Command Sgt. Maj. Wayne Brewster.

    “Winning the division level BWC means I am ready to face the challenge of becoming one of the best Soldiers in the US Army,” said Amagai. “It’s an honor to be part of HHC and represent HHC in Training Command level. I will do my best to standout in the competition.”



    Date Taken: 02.22.2017
    Date Posted: 02.22.2017 17:04
    Story ID: 224355
    Location: BASTROP, TX, US 
    Hometown: DALLAS, TX, US
    Hometown: HOUSTON, TX, US
    Hometown: MONTGOMERY, MN, US
    Hometown: NEW BOSTON, TX, US

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