'Speed & Power' enjoys organization day, raises money for brigade
May 12, 2011
FORT STEWART, Ga. - Soldiers and Families of 3rd Battalion, 69th Armor Regiment enjoyed a warm spring afternoon, May 5, when they held an organizational day at the Bennett Sports Complex. The organizational day included fun activities for children and spouses, as well as a Commander's Cup competition for the Soldiers.
"An organizational day also allows Families to come and have fun with their Soldiers," said Lt. Col. Jeffrey Denius, 3/69 commander. "We picked this day in late spring so the companies could prepare."
The 3/69's Commander's Cup competition incorporated multiple team sports, such as ultimate Frisbee, football, softball and volleyball. Competition, as it always is with Soldiers, was fierce.
"What exists across the battalion is a very healthy sense of competition between the companies," Lt. Col. Denius said. "So what we saw today was the culmination of internal platoon competition.The companies brought their best platoons forward to participate in a battalion-wide competition. It's a friendly competition, but it's an aggressive event, and it allows the Soldiers to get away from the grind of daily training. Although that's really important, and the Soldiers are motivated to do it, this is important as well."
The event, as well as preparing for it, had multiple purposes. Although the event was centered on having a good time, it also caused the Soldiers to raise their fitness level even higher in order to gain an edge over other teams.
"One of our goals across the battalion is to increase the fitness level of our Soldiers," Lt. Col. Denius said. "So all of our companies are implementing two-a-day physical training sessions throughout the week. [We have the usual physical training in the morning], and then the afternoon session focuses on athletics, which allows the Soldiers to have fun while increasing their fitness."
The Cup tournament lasted all day, and the points were tallied up at the conclusion of the day. In the end, Alpha Co., 3/69 took the cup. According to Capt. Paul Worley, A Co. commander, it went according to plan.
"The Soldiers did great today," Capt. Worley said. "We took the time to prepare and the guys were focused. There was a total team effort today, and that showed in the standings at the end. We wanted that cup more than anybody."
Planning was key for the winning company.
"We took a couple days last week to organize ourselves and get the teams set," Capt. Worley said. "Then the teams were able to practice and get a feel for one another. We weren't able to fine-tune anything, but I think we were prepared. We won't settle for anything less than first place, and we will do whatever we have to win. That's how we teach and train our guys, we don't settle for second place."
However, the organizational day wasn't over after the awards took place.
Whipped cream, chocolate syrup, ketchup and pickles were placed on a table and a chair in front of that. Then, starting from company first sergeants to the battalion commander, Soldiers and Families had an opportunity to pie their leader in the face - for a price.
The pie in the face event was a healthy way to have a good time at the expense of the leadership, said Lt. Col. Denius.
"But more importantly," he added, "It's about raising money for the brigade memorial."
Over $1,000 was raised for the Raider Brigade Fallen Soldier Memorial.
At the end of the day, Lt. Col. Denius surveyed Soldiers and Families leaving the complex as well as Soldiers cleaning the site for the next user with the astute eyes of a commander.
"I couldn't be more proud of my Soldiers," he said. "I can't emphasize enough that across the battalion there is a healthy sense of competition between the companies. They're all proud of each other."