EKU ROTC Places Second in Five-State Brigade Competition

ROTC squad photo

Eastern Kentucky University’s ROTC team, “the Colonels’ Battalion,” brought home a second place title at the recent ROTC 7th Brigade Bold Warrior Challenge at Fort Knox.

In the competition between 44 teams from Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee, Indiana, and Michigan, each nine-member team was given a mission. Each participant had more than 40 pounds of equipment, and each team had to move across a course over 10 miles long.

The teams had to complete a total of 22 tasks across the long course, and the total score was based on the time taken to complete the job and the success of the mission.

“We are so very proud of our team this year,” said Lt. Col. Ralph Hudnall, chair of military science at EKU. “Each volunteers a huge amount of his or her own time, above and beyond our normal, already heavy ROTC requirements. Our goal this year was to achieve a top ten performance that we could build on for next year.  They are far exceeding my expectations.”

Even though traditionally marked high in this competition, including first place in 2002 and second place in 2003 and 2004, the Colonels’ Battalion had placed in middle ranges in recent years.

Hudnall explained that “the winner of each brigade across ROTC (there are a total of eight) gets to go to the United States Military Academy at West Point in the Spring and compete against teams from around the world in the annual Sandhurst competition. It is our goal to represent EKU in that competition next year.”

Retired 1st Sgt. Richard Sirry, the team coach, “has gone far beyond any expectation in devoting his personal time to prepare our cadets,” Hudnall said.  “This would not have been possible without his efforts.”

Team members included: Ashley Livingston and Christian Wamsley, Richmond; Trevor Barnes and Lindsay Barnes, Bradenton, Fla.; Christian Stiene, Burlington; Christopher DeLeon, Jacksonville, Fla.; Brian Wade, Lexington; Beth Fariello, Radcliff; Matthew McStay, Vandalia, Ohio; and Karyn Zaage, Cedarville, Ohio.

Published on November 16, 2011