By Ms. Michelle Thum (Regional Health Command Europe)November 6, 2019
HALLE, Germany -- Sgt. Victoria Rincon, an animal care specialist at Royal Air Force Feltwell Veterinary Treatment Facility in Thetford, United Kingdom, participated in the World Championship in power lifting Oct. 26 and 27.
Rincon hasn't been a powerlifter for long, she started in the middle of February of this year. During the competition, Rincon set a personal record by adding 17.5 kilos to her total while competing against other females from more than 15 countries.
Managing being a Soldier and doing competitive sports hasn't been a challenge for her. The VTF and her command completely supports her.
"Sgt. Rincon gives her all as clinic noncommissioned officer in charge each day, ensuring smooth operations of our Military Working Dog program and caring for privately owned animals," said said Capt. Samantha Warner, officer in charge of the Feltwell VTF. "Then without missing a beat, she heads to the gym each evening. Her devotion to fitness has had a positive influence on all of us; encouraging many members of our staff to hit the gym more often than they usually would."
Animal care specialists, known as 68 Tangos, are Army Soldiers who provide care for government-owned animals such as military working dogs and privately owned animals of service members and their families. They also work to minimize the occurrence of disease in the animal populations which they are responsible for, ensuring that sick animals are quarantined and that healthy animals are properly vaccinated.
"I love cats and dogs, but I enjoy being a vet tech in the Army because I get to work with the Military Working Dogs," said Rincon. "Working at Feltwell is especially unique, since the Veterinary Corps falls under the Army. There aren't many other Army personnel here and we provide direct support to the Air Force."
Rincon says that as in every job, some days are more challenging than others and performing in a competitive sport offers similar challenges.
"It is stressful some days making sure you hit certain numbers, but just like with anything, you have some bad days but you also have some really amazing days." said Rincon. "It's those amazing days you hold on to if your workout isn't going great. On other days, you just have to trust the process - much like at work."
Rincon is proud of her service and for the opportunity to compete internationally.
"I really wanted to better myself and I also wanted to be a vet tech." said Rincon. "I never thought I would have had the opportunity to make it to the World Championship in Germany, representing the United Kingdom as an American. I feel very fortunate.
Moving forward, Rincon plans on participating in the 2020 World Championship in Powerlifting with the goal of improving her standing.