FORT MCCOY, Wis. - More than 35 U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers from all over the country are competing at the Combined Theater Engineer Commands' Best Warrior Competition at Fort McCoy, Wisconsin, April 25 to 29.
The "Combined TEC" refers to the 416th and 412th Theater Engineer Commands who are co-hosting the competition. They are responsible for all engineer Soldiers across the Army Reserve, which celebrated its 107th birthday April 23 and a total of 26,000 Soldiers.
The Best Warrior Competition is designed to test individual Soldiers in various Army skill-related events.
The Warriors who are competing said it is for a variety of reasons, but the most prominent is to be the elite.
"The reason I chose to compete in the Best Warrior Competition was to be the best. I think that is what the Best Warrior Competition represents: the best in every Soldier," said Sgt. Joseph Tuttle, from Ogdensburg, New York, representing the 412th TEC. "The competition to me means I have the chance of getting my name out there and being able to further my military career."
Other Warriors chose to compete to test themselves.
"I chose to compete in the Army Best Warrior to challenge myself, to exceed my personal goals and to represent my unit to the best of my ability," said Sgt. James Brennan, from Griswold, Connecticut, representing the 412th TEC. "To me, this competition is a personal challenge as well as a challenge by the Army. It is an opportunity to prove to myself I can do better than my best and show I am willing to accept and overcome any challenge set before me."
Soldiers will be tested in the area of physical fitness, rifle and pistol marksmanship, land navigation, long-distance ruck march, urban orienteering, Army Warrior Tasks, board appearance, military knowledge and a written exam and essay.
Most of the Soldiers who have made it to this level have already competed at the company, battalion or brigade levels to advance here.
A total of four winners will be selected (two for each TEC) in the Soldier and noncommissioned officer categories. Winners will move on to compete at the Army Reserve level, which will be hosted at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, May 3-8.