Shooting to win

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Daniel Ter Haar
  • 185th ARW Public Affairs
Members of the 185th Air Refueling Wing took part in the Iowa National Guard's Governor's X marksmanship competition at Camp Dodge near Des Moines Iowa, on May 22, 2016. Iowa Army National Guard and Iowa Air National Guard members got a chance to display their skills with various firearms in team events and individual challenges during the event, which has been happening annually since 1975.

After the 185th held tryouts, the wing sent three teams to the competition, each consisting of four Airmen. Teams from the 185th took first and second place in the total combined score of the event. All three teams finished in the top eight out of 23 total teams.

Tech. Sgt. Micah Larson assigned to the 185th ARW Security Forces Squadron, took second place in the individual combine score and Tech. Sgt. Mike Simoni, also assigned to the 185th Security Forces Squadron took third place. Out of the 97 competitors the 185th had four members finish in the top ten in individual competitions. Airmen from the unit also finished first in the team machine gun competition.

According to Master Sgt. Anthony Jensen with the security forces squadron, 185th members shot using the M16A2 rifle, M-9 pistol and the M249 light machine gun. One challenge involved members running 300 yards and then firing at a target.

The top 10 members receive the Governor's X tab to wear on their uniforms and this also gives them a chance to compete with other Guard members at regional and national events. 

Major Brandon East, the 185th Security Forces Squadron commander, said that the competitions are very challenging, especially at the national level.

"We're looking for the best sharp shooter, the best of the best from the unit, we go down there to win and the folks you're competing against are not slouches," said East.

According to East, the competition wasn't for those looking to improve their skills rather it was for more experienced shooters.

If you are a member of the 185th and are interested in being a part of the Governor's X shooting competition, you may contact Senior Master Sgt. Matthew Hoffman

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