By Sgt. Chris PerkeyApril 1, 2015
FORT BLISS, Texas -- Sunlight beamed through the windows as family, friends, Soldiers and fellow athletes filled the bleachers at Milam Gym during the Army Trials March 30, 2015. Competitors pulled out air rifles and took up a good firing position.
It's time for the shooting competition.
The athletes did not get there overnight or by themselves.
Spc. Chasity Kuczer, a Seymour, Wisconsin native, a locomotive mechanic assigned to the Warrior Transition Battalion, Fort Knox, Kentucky, said she started training in December 2014.
Focused and determined, Kuczer aimed down her sight, controlled her breathing and gently squeezed the trigger. Then ping. The sound every competitor wanted to hear.
This is Kuczer's first year competing in the Army Trials; however, she is no stranger to competitions.
"This is great! I used to compete before I was injured, and it's great to be out and be able to do this and prove to people that just because I am injured doesn't mean that I can't compete and compete with the best in the nation," said Kuczer.
Kuczer is recovering from injuries received while performing her duties as a mechanic.
"You meet some great people here," said Kuczer. "Everyone has a different story, we are all in the same place but everyone has taken a different path to get here. And it is interesting to hear everyone's stories and hear what they had to overcome to come here."
All the practice and hard work paid off for Kuczer.
Kuczer took 5th place overall in the prone air rifle competition, but her efforts didn't stop there.
As Kuczer prepared for the finals for the air rifle standing competition, her command group cheered her on.
"She is a good kid," said Command Sgt. Maj. David Munden, senior enlisted advisor for Warrior Transition Battalion, Fort Knox, Kentucky. "She really embraces the adaptive sports, continues to work hard to get through her injury and has a great attitude about it. The adaptive sports is [sic] one thing that she takes a lot of pride in and it is a good fit for her and very therapeutic as well."
Kuczer settled in to her firing position and she was prepared for the challenge.
Ping after ping, a smile starts to form over her face after she hears her name called out each round.
"There's no way that anyone could catch her after the first 6 or 7 rounds," said Lt. Col. Timothy Fanter, battalion commander, Warrior Transition Battalion, Fort Knox, Kentucky. "She just kept opening up the lead."
Kuczer took 1st place overall in the standing air rifle competition.
"We are very proud of her," said Munden.