SMDC's best finish competition
October 22, 2012
FORT LEE, Va. -- As the final day of the 2012 Best Warrior competition wraps up, competitors from U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command continue to strive for excellence.
Sgt. Brandon Kitchen and Sgt. Anthony Moore, USASMDC/ARSTRAT's Noncommissioned officer and Soldier of the Year competitors, ended the grueling four-day competition Thursday as the Army's "Super Bowl" of competitions ended at Fort Lee, Va.
"Our Soldiers are doing great," said SMDC Command Sgt. Maj. Larry S. Turner. "I think our Soldiers were prepared, trained and ready for this week. Like our competitors, I am anxious to get to the end, head to Washington, D.C., and hopefully hear the announcement that SMDC has won.
"Fort Lee has treated everyone with open arms," he added. "This year, this competition is a little bit different. It is a little more demanding and more focused mentally. Fort Lee has done a great job setting up the competition and helping change it up for the competitors."
The final day of the competition began with NCO and Soldier boards composed of Sgt. Maj. of the Army Raymond F. Chandler III and command sergeants major from around the Army major commands. The board consisted of questions concerning the NCOs and Soldiers knowledge and military bearing.
"The board is always a mentally challenging and stressful event," Moore said. "You always want to go in there and do your best. And no matter how many times you do it, it only takes one slip up, stutter, mistake or brain freeze to throw you off your game.
"I thought it was pretty cool to participate in a board at this level," he added. "It was a good event."
After the boards ended, the competitors were able to relax and enjoy themselves at the 2012 Best Warrior Competition closeout dinner. The Army's best NCOs and Soldiers then got a chance to reflect on what they had gone through and also how they can take what they have learned and use their newfound knowledge to educate and help train the warriors back in their units.
"This year, the competition is really going to help my career and my leadership skills," Kitchen said. "Just like last year, I came here and I met a fantastic group of noncommissioned officers and Soldiers that I was able to learn a lot from. There are a lot of different groups here -- special forces, drill sergeants, instructors -- that provide a lot of input and will allow me to better train my Soldiers and be a better leader.
"So I think that is probably the biggest thing that I am going to take back to my unit is all the training that I got from the events," he added.