2014 US Army Reserve Best Warrior takes only the best
July 11, 2014
JOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST, N.J. - Only the best can hack it. Only 42 of the best made it to here for the 2014 U.S. Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition.
"All Soldiers must be able to shoot, move and communicate. If you think about the Best Warrior Competition, what are we doing here? Basic soldiering skills," said Command Sgt. Maj. Luther Thomas Jr., the U.S. Army Reserve command sergeant major. "But when you're on the battlefield, just the basic soldiering skills - shoot, move and communicate - could be the difference between mission success and mission failure, or life and death. So this is an awesome opportunity for Soldiers to practice basic soldiering skills."
Luther, the senior enlisted Soldier for the U.S. Army Reserve, Maj. Gen. Glenn Lesniak, the deputy commander for USARC, and Brig. Gen. Ferdinand Irizarry, the deputy chief of staff for USARC, recognized the winners of the competition after a grueling weeklong challenge.
The 2014 USAR Best Warrior noncommissioned officer of the year is Staff Sgt. Landon Nordby, a military officer from St. James, Minnesota, assigned to the 79th Military Police Company out of Wabasha, Minnesota, representing the 200th Military Police Command.
The enlisted Soldier winner is Spc. Keegan Carlson, a civil affairs specialist with the 440th Civil Affairs Battalion from Fort Carson, Colorado, representing the U.S. Army Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command.
"It is easier to get into the NFL, the NBA or be any professional player than to get to this point," said Irizarry during the ceremony. "The odds are harder to become Best Warrior, and that impresses me."
There were 29 tasks, more than 37 miles of marching, an Army Physical Fitness Test, qualifying with the 9 mm pistol and M16 rifle, ruck march, gas chamber, night fire, reflexive fire, night and day land navigation course, along with nine mystery events.
The winners of the competition will move on to compete against the National Guard and active duty Army NCO and enlisted winners in the fall at Fort Lee, Virginia.
Other winners were:
Best Warrior runner ups: Sgt. Lance Clifford, representing the 79th Sustainment Support Command; Spc. Keith Lewis, representing Army Reserve Medical Command.
Highest Army Physical Fitness Test: Staff Sgt. Landon Nordby, representing the 200th Military Police Command; Spc. Christopher Irizarry, representing 3rd Medical Deployment Support Command.
Best marksman: Staff Sgt. Antoni Bukowski, representing the 377th Theater Sustainment Command; Spc. Keith Lewis, representing Army Reserve Medical Command.
Combatives champions: Sgt. Juan Jackson, representing the 416th Theater Engineer Command; Spc. Joshua Hawn, representing the 84th Training Command.