Richmond sets sights on 2008 Olympics

By U.S. Army Marksmanship UnitFebruary 21, 2008

U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit

Richmond sets sights on 2008 Olympics

FORT BENNING, Ga. - When Sgt. Joshua M. Richmond started shooting at the age of 11, he didn't know where his choice of sport would take him. He practiced faithfully and began competing in local shooting competitions. By the time he was 17, he was shooting at the Junior Nationals and World Cup matches. That's where the scouts from the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit found him.

A native of Hillsgrove, Pa., Richmond, now 22, graduated from Sullivan County High School of Sullivan County, Pa., in 2004. He joined the Army Oct. 25, 2004 with one goal in mind - to make the 2008 Olympic Shooting Team.

After completing Basic Training and Infantry Training at Fort Benning, Richmond was assigned to the Army Marksmanship Unit Feb. 18, 2005.

"I enlisted in the Army to achieve all my goals and make it to the Olympics," Richmond said. "The USAMU and the Army are giving me the training and time I need to become the best in my sport. They allow me to do my hobby as my job."

Richmond brought home a Gold Medal and an Olympic Quota Slot to the United States after his victory at the International Shooting Sport Federation Shotgun World Cup June 11 in Lonato, Italy. He outshot 66 of the world's best double trap shooters to win the Gold Medal and an Olympic Quota Slot in Men's Double Trap after hitting 191 targets out of a possible 200.

The USAMU Soldier also won a world championship title in May 2005. He won the first Gold Medal for the United States at the 2005 International Shooting Sport Federation World Shotgun Championships in Junior Men's Double Trap. Richmond also led the USA to the medal stand for a second time in the Junior Men's Team event.

The 2008 Summer Olympic Games will be conducted in Beijing, China, in August. Richmond is currently in third place in the Olympic Trials standings. The Shotgun Olympic Selection Matches are March 8 to 16 in Kerrville, Texas.

Richmond has numerous marksmanship accomplishments. The following are some highlights over the course of his career: Gold Medal, Double Trap, 2007 Pan-American Games and Bronze Medal, Double Trap, 2007 World Championships; Gold Medal and Olympic Quota Slot, Double Trap, 2007 World Cup, Lonato, Italy; 2007 Double Trap National Champion Team Gold Medal, Double Trap, 2006 World Championships; 2005 Men's Double Trap Junior World Champion and Member of Bronze Medal Team; 2005 Championship of the Americas Double Trap Gold Medalist and World Cup Team Gold Medalist; 2005 Double Trap National Champion; 2005, 2004 and 2003 Junior Nationals Gold Medalist; and 2004 World Cup Brazil Junior Gold Medalist.

Richmond has been awarded the Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, U.S. International Distinguished Badge, Grenade Marksmanship Badge and won the Accessions Support Brigade Soldier of the Year Competition in 2005. He and his wife Scharri live in Fort Mitchell, Ala.