CAMP BUEHRING, Kuwait – Sweat drops hit the floor as the countdown to 500 weighed heavily on Staff Sgt. Anthony Vasquez, but hearing the cheers “row, row, row” would give him what he needed to finish strong.
Vasquez, an infantryman assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 67th Armor Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, along with the rest of the soldiers in his battalion, competed in the “Death Dealer” Challenge on Camp Buehring, Kuwait, Nov. 29.
The Death Dealer Challenge, an organized sports competition, aimed at bringing the unit together and providing soldiers with some well earned time away from work.
“The Death Dealer Challenge was a series of physical and mental events that were designed to inspire soldiers, and instill esprit de corps and morale throughout the unit,” said 1st Lt. Rick Dickson, assistant operations officer in charge, Headquarters and Headquarters Company.
Soldiers competed in multiple events, which included a 5K run, football, basketball, CrossFit competition, and a video game tournament.
“There was a good level of healthy competition, and they [the soldiers] got to interact with each other, and other companies that they don’t normally see, because we have been in the midst of a rigorous training cycle,” said Dickson, who was also the event’s organizer.
Soldiers enjoyed the time away from work and gave it their all during the competition.
“Competing made me feel great because we sped through everything and I didn’t stop for anything, so that made me feel good,” said Vasquez.
Vasquez, who plans to go Special Forces, always takes the opportunity to challenge himself.
“I’m trying out for something bigger and better, so I am using this as training,” said Vasquez. “Every time there is any kind of event, I try to compete and see where I stand with everybody else.”
Support meant a lot to the competitors.
A lot of soldiers came out to support even if they were not competing, said Vasquez. It is always awesome to have your soldiers cheering each other on, saying they can make it.
When it was all said and done, Headquarters and Headquarters Company came away the victors, by winning three out the five events, and finishing second in another. The leadership of Death Dealer Battalion plans on doing at least one more challenge while in Kuwait.