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    Soldiers compete in 2020 Pennsylvania Best Warrior Competition

    Soldiers compete in 2020 Pennsylvania Best Warrior Competition

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Zane Craig | Staff Sgt. Trevor Howard with 1st Battalion, 110th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry...... read more read more

    FORT INDIANTOWN GAP, PA, UNITED STATES

    03.14.2020

    Story by Staff Sgt. Zane Craig 

    Joint Force Headquarters, Pennsylvania National Guard

    FORT INDIANTOWN GAP, Pa. – Fourteen enlisted Pennsylvania Army National Guard Soldiers competed in the 2020 state-level Best Warrior Competition here March 11-14.

    The Soldiers competed in ten events designed to test the limits of their physical and mental endurance and assess the "Whole Soldier Concept."

    The competition began March 11 with the new Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT), followed by a written exam on general Soldier knowledge. On day two competitors performed an M4 carbine weapons qualification and a 9 mm pistol weapons qualification. Immediately following weapons qualifications, competitors executed an obstacle course before conducting an eight mile ruck march. Using their little remaining energy, the Soldiers then negotiated the leadership reaction course.

    Day three consisted of a very early wake up to conduct night and day land navigation. Competitors then took part in a medical event where they conducted team movement drills to perform medical aid in a combat zone scenario, which culminated with loading a simulated casualty onto an aircraft for evacuation.

    On the final day of the competition competitors took part in the last evaluated event, a leadership and appearance board. Later that afternoon the Soldiers were honored during the closing ceremony of the competition, where they received words of encouragement from Maj. Gen. Mark Schindler, deputy adjutant general – Army, and Command Sgt. Maj. Harry Buchanan, Pennsylvania’s senior enlisted advisor.

    “I thank you for coming out and competing in this,” said Schindler. “It’s Soldiers like you that inspire me every day. Be proud of yourselves, and be proud of what you’ve done here no matter what happens.”

    The fourteen Soldiers were competing in three separate boards within the competition: the Noncommissioned Officer of the Year, the Soldier of the Year, and the Command Sgt. Maj. Jay H. Fields NCO Leadership Award.

    Staff Sgt. Trevor Howard with 1st Battalion, 110th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 28th Infantry Division, was named Noncommissioned Officer of the Year.

    “I’m excited to represent Pennsylvania going forward,” Howard said, “I competed last year and the winner then, Staff Sgt. Friedlein went pretty far so I’m excited to see what I can do myself.”

    Spc. Thaisen Nguyen with 1st Battalion, 111th Infantry Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 28th Infantry Division, was named Soldier of the Year.

    “I had a lot of early mornings getting to the gym,” said Nguyen of preparing for the competition. “Pretty much all I could do as part-time Soldier was the physical stuff, the Soldier skills like shooting and land nav had to be refreshed the day of.”

    Staff Sgt. Graham Hall with Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 28th Infantry Division, was awarded the Command Sgt. Maj. Jay H. Fields NCO Leadership Award.

    “For me the most fulfilling part of the competition was coming here and finding so many like-minded individuals with similar skill levels,” said Hall. “It really was like we were one big family, we got along pretty amazingly.”

    Howard and Nguyen will go on to represent Pennsylvania at the Region II Best Warrior Competition held at Aberdeen Proving Ground, South, Md. In May, where they will compete against Army National Guard Soldiers from other states in the northeast U.S.

    FULL LIST OF COMPETITORS

    Noncommissioned Officer of the Year:
    - Sgt. Jacques Cooper, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Fort Indiantown Gap Training Center Garrison Command
    - Staff Sgt. Trevor Howard, 1st Battalion, 110th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 28th Infantry Division
    - Sgt. Tyler Landis, 121st Transportation Company, 213th Regional Support Group
    - Sgt. Darian Stripe, 337th Engineer Battalion, 55th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, 28th Infantry Division

    Soldier of the Year:
    - Spc. Christopher Cooper, 228th Engineer Company, 55th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, 28th Infantry Division
    - Pfc. Ryan Hornickel, 121st Transportation Company, 213th Regional Support Group
    - Spc. Wade Morehart, 1st Battalion, 109th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 28th Infantry Division
    - Spc. Thaisen Nguyen, 1st Battalion, 111th Infantry Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 28th Infantry Division
    - Spc. Alyssa Veit, Joint Force Headquarters Medical Detachment

    Command Sgt. Maj. Jay H. Fields NCO Leadership Award:
    - Sgt. Colt Garing, 1st Battalion, 107th Field Artillery, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 28th Infantry Division
    - Staff Sgt. Graham Hall, , Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 28th Infantry Division
    - Sgt. Emily Neady, Joint Force Headquarters, Eastern Army National Guard Aviation Training Site
    - Sgt. Jennie Rupert, 28th Financial Management Support Unit, 213th Regional Support Group
    - Staff Sgt. Carl Sheridan, 1st Battalion, 109th Field Artillery, 55th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, 28th Infantry Division

    FOR MORE INFORMATION: Please contact Lt. Col. Keith Hickox (717) 861-6254, or e-mail ng.pa.paarng.list.pao@mail.mil

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 03.14.2020
    Date Posted: 03.14.2020 15:14
    Story ID: 365239
    Location: FORT INDIANTOWN GAP, PA, US 
    Hometown: BLAIN, PA, US
    Hometown: PHILADELPHIA, PA, US
    Hometown: SHINGLEHOUSE, PA, US

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