Soldiers, Marines bond during 4th annual Urban Warrior Challenge

Story by Sgt. Nicholas T. Holmes

JOINT BASE MYER-HENDERSON HALL, Va. – Soldiers from the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) and Marines from Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall competed against each other during the fourth annual Urban Warrior Challenge on June 22.

“Today we have the Soldiers of The Old Guard and Marines of Henderson Hall here to compete in a series of events,” said Cpt. Joseph Hicks, officer in charge of the event with The Old Guard. “We are doing this event to build the camaraderie between the two organizations.”

Following the opening ceremony speech, Soldiers and Marines in 10-man teams, competed against each other in a series of events, starting with a 250-yard swim at Zembiec Pool.

After completing the swim, each team ran one mile and competed in a 400 push-up challenge event.

During push-up event, members from each team alternated turns executing as many consecutive push-ups as possible until the teams completed a total of 400 push-ups. Additionally, participants were required to lift a 40-pound ammunition can above their heads 30 times before the next team member could start.

After this event, teams then moved to the litter-run portion of the competition. During this event, teams carried two 40-pound ammunition cans and transported a team member on a litter more than half a mile to the next event.

“The litter carry was the most difficult,” said Sgt. William Payne, a healthcare specialist with 529th Regimental Support Company. “It was hard because we had to work with individuals with different heights and fitness abilities to accomplish a common task, plus it was pretty hot out here today.”

The final event was the 80-yard High Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle pull. Each team pulled the 5,900-pound vehicle as fast as they could across the finish line using rope attached to the front of the vehicle.

Throughout the day, other teams of Soldiers and Marines competed in open events, which included basketball, dodge ball, volleyball and bowling.

During lunch Soldiers, Marines and family members dined together while watching a military working dog demonstration conducted by Soldiers from the 947th Military Police Detachment, with 289th Military Police Company.

The Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps and the U.S. Army Drill team also preformed for the attendees.

The final event of the day was a tug-of-war challenge, between the Soldiers and the Marines. The Soldiers came out victorious for the second consecutive year.

However, the entire day was a win for both branches.

“Today was great,” said Payne. “We don’t get to interact with the Marines very often. It was great to get us all together for some friendly completion.”

The event also increased esprit de corp among the service members, according to Hicks.

“I think that today’s event went exceptionally well,” said Hicks. “It was great that everyone had the chance to come out in a less formal setting and bond with other organizations. I saw great participation across the board. I want to thank everyone for all of the support that went into making today a success.”

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