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Sgt. John Emmett of Kaiserslautern’s 21st Theater Support Command was recently named the Army’s best warrior for 2006-2007.

Sgt. John Emmett of Kaiserslautern’s 21st Theater Support Command was recently named the Army’s best warrior for 2006-2007. (Ben Bloker / S&S)

Sgt. John Emmett of Kaiserslautern’s 21st Theater Support Command was recently named the Army’s best warrior for 2006-2007.

Sgt. John Emmett of Kaiserslautern’s 21st Theater Support Command was recently named the Army’s best warrior for 2006-2007. (Ben Bloker / S&S)

Spc. John Emmett assembles an M240B machine gun within three minutes during the Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills of the Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition Oct. 5.

Spc. John Emmett assembles an M240B machine gun within three minutes during the Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills of the Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition Oct. 5. (Jorge Gomez / Fort Lee PAO)

Spc. John Emmett assists a casualty to a collection point during the Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills at the competition at Fort Lee, Va.

Spc. John Emmett assists a casualty to a collection point during the Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills at the competition at Fort Lee, Va. (Mike Strasser / Fort Lee PAO)

U.S. Army Europe’s NCO and Soldier of the Year, Sgt. Delroy Barnett and Spc. John Emmett, talk with Sgt. Maj. of the Army Kenneth O. Preston after the 2006 Department of the Army NCO/Soldier of the Year Competition’s welcome dinner Oct. 1 at Fort Lee.

U.S. Army Europe’s NCO and Soldier of the Year, Sgt. Delroy Barnett and Spc. John Emmett, talk with Sgt. Maj. of the Army Kenneth O. Preston after the 2006 Department of the Army NCO/Soldier of the Year Competition’s welcome dinner Oct. 1 at Fort Lee. (Mike Strasser / Fort Lee PAO)

KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany — Rambo ain’t got nothing on this soldier.

Sgt. John Emmett of Kaiserslautern’s 21st Theater Support Command recently was named the Army’s best warrior for 2006-2007, after a grueling Armywide competition against nine other top-notch Joes.

It is the first time a 21st TSC soldier has garnered the distinction of the Army’s Soldier of the Year.

So, what was it like when Emmett was announced the winner?

“I was anticipating it,” said the 20-year-old Army reservist from Greenwood, Ind.

“I was hoping it. I expected to win. You want to come into a competition expecting to win. You want to go into the announcement expecting to win, too. I wasn’t surprised, but I was truly honored. I felt privileged to be given that title.”

But for the soldier, who at the time of the competition held the rank of specialist, the title came with a sense of responsibility.

“I have the responsibility of leading a good example, living the Army values and doing the right thing at all times,” he said. “It really came with a sense of humility.”

In winning the five-day competition in early October, Emmett, among other tasks:

Achieved the maximum score on a physical fitness test.Performed day and night land navigation in full gear.Dragged a 225-pound mannequin through an obstacle course.Grappled with the other competitors in an Army combatives tournament.Emmett represented U.S. Army Europe during the Armywide competition, after taking the USAREUR Soldier of the Year title in August.

The thought that got Emmett through the USAREUR competition was Jesus carrying the cross on the road to Calvary.

While Emmett found the USAREUR level competition physically challenging, the Armywide contest was more of a mental challenge, and his faith played a big role. “It was just asking God for the agility of mind, the quickness of mind to react to these things quickly and accurately,” said the signal support system specialist with the 21st TSC Headquarters and Headquarters Company.

“That’s more in terms of what I asked for in my prayer during those few days, and there was a lot of prayer.”

Emmett’s road to becoming the Army’s best warrior began April 26 when he sat for the soldier of the month board at the company level. Through the process, Emmett credits the mentorship and sponsorship of Sgt. 1st Class David Fannon and Staff Sgt. Lawrence Allen in helping him achieve the soldier of the year title.

“Sergeant Emmett’s done great things,” Fannon said. “It’s great to see an Army Reserve soldier step up and accomplish what he has.”

Emmett’s father, who retired from the Army at the rank of sergeant first class, has always told him to stay humble and look to himself. It seems that Emmett is heeding his father’s words.

“Through this time, I continue to pray and hope that I stay humble, I stay modest, remember where I came from and who I am — that I’m not Superman, that I’m not super soldier,” Emmett said. “I just managed to do well.”


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