Army Reserve Command "Best Warriors"

Dedicated to coverage of all Army Reserve "Best Warrior" candidates

Posts Tagged ‘Fort Lee’

Rider, McDowell complete Mystery Event, Combatives Tourney

Posted by timothyhalephoto on October 22, 2010

And the Winner Is … ?

Timothy L. Hale
Army Reserve Public Affairs

View Mystery Event Images

View Modern Army Combatives Tournament images

FORT LEE, Va. – Don’t think this entry is going to spill the beans on who the Soldier and NCO Best Warriors are for 2010. You’ll have to wait until this coming Monday to find out when the announcement is made in Washington, D.C. at the Sgt. Major of the Army luncheon at the AUSA Annual Convention.

That said, everyone associated with Sgt. David Rider and Spc. Joshua McDowell should be very proud of the way they represented not only themselves but the Army Reserve during this week’s competition.

It was not uncommon this week to hear many of the event cadre’ speak about both of them and the quality of the Soldiers they are.

It’s a Mystery

Today started like the last two days, in the dark as they were faced with a Mystery Event – a series of mini-scenarios designed to keep them moving and thinking without much time in between.

First an artillery barrage resulting in mass casualties, then it was on to protecting a polling center before coming under attack which led to a cordon and search operation, then on to a session in a marksmanship simulator followed by a series of male and female uniform inspections and finally ending up with a stress fire lane.

These events then culminated with a Modern Army Combatives tournament.

Double-Elimination

A new twist to this year’s tourney was to pair off the first round by weight class regardless of NCO or Soldier.

Rider, unfortunately, did not survive the first round and was knocked into the consolation bracket (more to come on that later).

Meanwhile, McDowell reeled off win after win until his sixth match which resulted in a loss in the semi-finals, knocking him to the consolation bracket.

In the meantime, Rider is fighting his way through his bracket and, yes, you saw this coming – Rider AND McDowell faced off against each other for fourth and fifth place overall. The match ended with Rider coming out on top. Rider finished with a 5-2 record and McDowell a 3.2 record in the tournament.

An Incredible Experience

At the end of the day, both young men said the Army Best Warrior experience was an incredible experience for them.

“I just tried to make through each event and see how I stacked up at the end,” McDowell said. “I learned so much here and feel like I have developed a bond with the other Warriors this week.”

He said one of the high points was being able to lead a team of Soldiers through different events since he doesn’t get many opportunities to do so.

“I learned to lead with confidence and to lead my Soldiers through each event. It was actually great to forget out the points and just go through each event with them.”

For Rider, the biggest accomplishment he said he felt was the “pride in the way I conducted myself this week, whether I win or lose.”

Some of his take-aways from this week was learning to motivate his squad of Soldiers and to train hard to prepare for not just competitions but any mission.

“If you train well ahead of time, you will reap the rewards later.”

No matter the outcome this coming Monday, Sgt. Rider and Spc. McDowell are definitely winners!

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Rider, McDowell send hot lead downrange

Posted by timothyhalephoto on October 22, 2010

Timothy L. Hale
Army Reserve Public Affairs


View images from M4 Rifle Night Qualification

FORT LEE, Va. – After a day that saw the competition start and end in darkness for Army Reserve Sgt. David Rider and Spc. McDowell, the only have one day left to get through before the 2010 Army Best Warrior competition is over.

Tonight, the pair engaged a number of targets during the M4 Rifle Night Qualification range.

A cool breeze blew towards the Warriors as parachute flares streaked into the dark skies. Artillery simulators flashed at various distances across the landscape often turning night into day with their bright white flash.

Tomorrow, they will complete the competition phase for this year with a Mystery Event. Don’t ask, it’s even a mystery to this writer.

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Rider, McDowell Press on through Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills

Posted by timothyhalephoto on October 21, 2010

Timothy L. Hale
Army Reserve Public Affairs

View Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills Images (Editor’s Note:  some images my be too graphic for small children)

FORT LEE, Va. – An early morning wake-up greeted Sgt. David Rider and Spc. Joshua McDowell and the other 22 Army Best Warrior candidates as they set out for a series of events comprised of Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills.

There were a number of lanes to include:  Military Operations in Urban Terrain (MOUT), convoy simulators, IED lane, 9mm lane and a medical trauma lane.

This afternoon and again this evening, Rider and McDowell put their marksmanship skills to the test with a day and night M4 rifle qualification.

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McDowell ‘Skunks’ Competition, Rider has Top 4 Finish

Posted by timothyhalephoto on October 21, 2010

Timothy L. Hale
Army Reserve Public Affairs

View images from Night Urban Orienteering

FORT LEE, Va. – Don’t let the headline fool you – Spc. Joshua McDowell and Sgt. David Rider had fantastic finish times during the Army Best Warrior Competition Night Urban Warfighter Orienteering Course.

The reference to the black and singularly wide white striped mammal is because McDowell encountered what could be considered an early Mystery Task – negotiating around a skunk on the last of his four check points.

But have no fear, McDowell took care of the business at hand while his lane safety walker shared glances with the furry critter keeping it a safe distance away.

McDowell was the first of the 24 Warriors to cross the finish line finding all four points in just over 40 minutes. The next closest junior enlisted Soldier came in around the 1:24 mark on the clock.

His Army Reserve battle buddy, Rider, came in fourth overall with 1:09 showing on the clock and he was the third NCO to cross the line.

The Warriors had 3.5 hours to find four points scattered across the main post.

Tomorrow will be an even longer day as Rider and McDowell will start the day at 0600 hrs with Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills and then will be followed by a series of M4 rifle range qualification events.

(EDITOR’s NOTE: No skunks, Warriors or Lane Safety Walkers were harmed during the course of the event)

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Rider, McDowell slosh through Day Urban Orienteering at DA Best Warrior

Posted by timothyhalephoto on October 20, 2010

Timothy L. Hale
Army Reserve Public Affairs

View images from Day Urban Orienteering

FORT LEE, Va. – Almost as if it was on cue, the skies opened up just as Army Reserve Sgt. David Rider and Spc. Joshua McDowell arrived and the other 22 Army Best Warriors arrived at the PT track on the Ordnance Center and School side of Fort Lee for the start of the Daytime Urban Warfighter Orienteering Course.

But as the old saying in the Army goes, ‘If it ain’t raining, we ain’t training’ goes, both Rider and McDowell donned their ‘battle rattle, grabbed their clipboards, maps, plotters and DAGRS and set off on the roads around the post.

Their goal, find four strategically placed points and return to the start point before their three hour time limit was up.

Later this evening, they will again repeat the process for the Night Urban Orienteering Course.

Let’s hope for a little drier weather.

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Now the fun begins … Day 3 of Army Best Warrior Competition

Posted by timothyhalephoto on October 20, 2010

Timothy L. Hale
Army Reserve Public Affairs

View Images from PCC/PCI


FORT LEE, Va. – After Monday’s Board Appearance and Tuesday’s APFT along with the written exam and essay, the 2010 Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition is about to go full-bore tactical in less than one hour.

This morning was spent preparing their tactical gear with a PCC/PCI at the Post Field House.

Apologies for the short update but I have to get to the field for the Day Urban Warfighter Orienteering Course. The night course starts at 1800 today and runs until 2200.

Check back later this evening for more updates.

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Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills, Day Qual, Stress Fire, Night Fire

Posted by geraldostlund on October 2, 2009

Flares, tracer rounds, and explosions rocked the night at the Army Best Warrior Competition at Fort Lee, Oct 2 2009. Soldiers were up at 3 a.m. and didn't rack out until after midnight. Up again at 3 on Friday for the mystery event. Photo by Tim Hale, USARC Public Affairs.

Flares, tracer rounds, and explosions rocked the night at the Army Best Warrior Competition at Fort Lee, Oct 2 2009. Soldiers were up at 3 a.m. and didn't rack out until after midnight. Up again at 3 on Friday for the mystery event. Photo by Tim Hale, USARC Public Affairs.

It was a long day. Especially following a long day Wednesday. Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler and Spec. Shiloh Becher got maybe 3 hours sleep each of the last two nights. But, none of the other competitors got any more sleep either. Watch the video of “best shots” from yesterday’s competition.

Today is the last day – and again started at 0300 with the mystery event – a uniform inspection, a roll-over simulator, assault a village searching for terrorists, and evaluate a casualty. If that wasn’t enough, the competitors immediately moved into the combatives tournament.

No one will know the winners – one Soldier (E4 and below) and one NCO Best Warrior for 2009 until Monday when the Sergeant Major of the Army Kenneth O. Preston introduces the two at the Association of the United States Army annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

Until then, the competitors get a little rest, heal their wounds, and stress over the details: did I do enough? Was there something more I could bring to the competition? For those who’ve watched Butler and Becher, we’re confident they gave it their all – and they were “spot on” througout the competition.

Will the Army Reserve take home another win this year? Stay tuned.

Check out all the photos and video at our Flickr site. Follow at Twitter and Facebook.

Spec. Shiloh Becher runs through the stress fire event Thursday, October 1, 2009 during the Army Best Warrior Competion at Fort Lee, Virginia. Shown here, Becher just finished climbing over the wall and will pickup the simulated wounded Soldier and carry him to safety. Becher is one of two Army Reserve Soldiers competing for the honor to be named Army Best Warrior. Photo by Tim Hale, USARC public affairs.

Spec. Shiloh Becher runs through the stress fire event Thursday, October 1, 2009 during the Army Best Warrior Competion at Fort Lee, Virginia. Shown here, Becher just finished climbing over the wall and will pickup the simulated wounded Soldier and carry him to safety. Becher is one of two Army Reserve Soldiers competing for the honor to be named Army Best Warrior. Photo by Tim Hale, USARC public affairs.

Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler treats a casualty during the Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills event at the  Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition at Fort Lee, Va. on Thursday, Oct. 1, 2009. Butler is the Army Reserve NCO of the Year. (Timothy L. Hale/Army Reserve Public Affairs)
Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler treats a casualty during the Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills event at the Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition at Fort Lee, Va. on Thursday, Oct. 1, 2009. Butler is the Army Reserve NCO of the Year. (Timothy L. Hale/Army Reserve Public Affairs)
Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler runs through the stress fire event Thursday, October 1, 2009 during the Army Best Warrior Competion at Fort Lee, Virginia. Shown here, Butler pulls a manequin to simulate a buddy-rescue. Butler is one of two Army Reserve Soldiers competing for the honor to be named Army Best Warrior. Photo by Tim Hale, USARC public affairs.
Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler runs through the stress fire event Thursday, October 1, 2009 during the Army Best Warrior Competion at Fort Lee, Virginia. Shown here, Butler pulls a manequin to simulate a buddy-rescue. Butler is one of two Army Reserve Soldiers competing for the honor to be named Army Best Warrior. Photo by Tim Hale, USARC public affairs.
 

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Urban Warfare Orienteering

Posted by geraldostlund on October 1, 2009

Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler a member of the United States Army Reserve Medical Command in the 4225 United States Army Hospital in Helena MT. checks his position during the Urban Orienteering Course as part of the Best Warrior competition being held in Ft. Lee Va.  The competitors are timed on both day and night courses.

Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler a member of the United States Army Reserve Medical Command in the 4225 United States Army Hospital in Helena MT. checks his position during the Urban Orienteering Course as part of the Best Warrior competition being held in Ft. Lee Va. The competitors are timed on both day and night courses.

Lots of walking…maybe some jogging. Getting lost is part of the deal (maybe) as is tying your best to straight-line it to your plotted point. 

For Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler, that meant going through otherwise “forbidden territory.” During yesterday’s Urban Warfare Orienteering Course (UWOC) Butler found himself walking across the grass lawn of the ranking general officer on post. “I wonder what they’ll say,” quipped Butler. But, across he went – getting to the next point in a straight line saves valuable time – time he couldnt afford to give up by keeping with protocol and walking around the manicured lawn of the general.  Watch Butler describe the incident.

Butler had other troubles – at one point frantically looking for his point marker but not finding it. “I even looked in the tree, but couldn’t find it.” (Watch the video)

But, in the end, he was confident in his abilities to get all the points and back. He even joked about taking a break mid-course! Butler heads to the PX.

For his part, Spec. Shiloh Becher too had issues finding one of his points, spending a precious extra 20 minutes in the woods until he finally got ahold of it. Don’t worry, he made up some time and got finished within the time limit set by the competition.

Today – Warrior Battle Tasks and Weapons Qualifications. Stay tuned.

Check out all the photos and video at our Flickr site. Follow at Twitter and Facebook.

Spc. Shiloh Becher walks to a checkpoint during the day Urban Warfighting Orienteering Course at the Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition at Fort Lee, Va. on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2009. Becher is the Army Reserve Soldier of the Year. (Timothy L. Hale/Army Reserve Public Affairs)

Spc. Shiloh Becher walks to a checkpoint during the day Urban Warfighting Orienteering Course at the Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition at Fort Lee, Va. on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2009. Becher is the Army Reserve Soldier of the Year. (Timothy L. Hale/Army Reserve Public Affairs)Spc. Shiloh Becher has his map verified after completing the day Urban Warfighting Orienteering Course at the Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition at Fort Lee, Va. on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2009. (Timothy L. Hale/Army Reserve Public Affairs)

Spc. Shiloh Becher has his map verified after completing the day Urban Warfighting Orienteering Course at the Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition at Fort Lee, Va. on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2009. (Timothy L. Hale/Army Reserve Public Affairs)

Spc. Shiloh Becher has his map verified after completing the day Urban Warfighting Orienteering Course at the Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition at Fort Lee, Va. on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2009. (Timothy L. Hale/Army Reserve Public Affairs)

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Can the Army Reserve Repeat with Butler and Becher?

Posted by geraldostlund on September 28, 2009

Monday, September 28, 2009 – 9:00. Weeks of intense training, studying, physical fitness, mock boards and mental preparedness. Second guessing and “I wish I had more time to…” moments are gone. Competition starts today at Fort Lee, Virginia to determine who gets to claim the title of Best Warrior for the world’s greatest Army.
Army Reserve Best Warrior Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler is at Fort Lee, Virginia this week competing for Army's top honor.Army Reserve Best Warrior for 2009, Spec. Shiloh Becher is at Fort Lee, Virginia this week competing for Army's Best Warrior honors.
Army Reserve Best Warrior for 2009, Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler (L) and Spec. Shiloh Becher (R) and are at Fort Lee, Virginia this week competing for Army’s Best Warrior honors.

Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler and Spec. Shiloh Becher, representing the Army Reserve, are anxiously awaiting their chance to appear before the Sergeant Major of the Army (SMA) and other senior Command Sergeants Major. Many competitors over the years will tell you that this event is the most worrisome – what are they going to ask, what are they going to scrutinize on my uniform, how do I answer their questions with confidence, but without cockiness? Did I study enough?

Butler will go first, at 10:15. He’ll have 20 minutes in front of the highest ranking NCO in the Army. Sergeant Major of the Army Kenneth O. Preston has presided over this competition for six years. All Sergeants Major are a bit intimidating, but the SMA by default is the definition of intimidating for a Soldier competing for Best Warrior honors.

Becher will appear this afternoon at 3:45. Having more time is both a blessing and a curse. A little more time allows you to review potential questions. But, with a little more time you can start second guessing yourself…and making yourself more nervous by the minute.

Only time will tell whether time is on his side, but as true professionals these Soldiers are ready and more than capable of repeating last year’s win for the Army Reserve.

Tomorrow – Pre-Combat Inspections. Wednesday, Army Physical Fitness Test, Urban Orienteering Day, and Urban Orienteering Night.

If you were here at Fort Lee, what advice would you give SSG Butler and SPC Becher?
Send them a note of encouragement…click on the links below to go to their biography pages and post a comment!
    Staff Sgt. Aaron Butler 
    Spec. Shiloh Becher

Learn more about the competition on the Army’s Best Warrior micro-site.

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