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Soldiers run, shoot, fight to earn title of ‘best warrior’ in Europe

Spc. Derek Teegardin, right, uses a rear-naked choke against Spc. Robert Dees at the 2018 U.S. Army Europe Best Warrior Competition, Friday, Aug. 17, 2018, at Grafenwoehr, Germany.

MARTIN EGNASH/STARS AND STRIPES

By MARTIN EGNASH | STARS AND STRIPES Published: August 17, 2018

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — After a week of grueling tests of physical fitness and martial arts skills, three soldiers emerged victorious at the 2018 U.S. Army Europe Best Warrior competition.

Spc. Jacob Root, an infantryman with the 173rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Airborne) won the soldier category, for junior enlisted. Staff Sgt. Cesar Gonzalez, an infantryman with the 7th Army Training Command, won the noncommissioned officer category, and 1st Lt. Robert Martin, an infantry officer also with 7ATC, won the officer category.

“It was a really tough competition, and there are a lot of great soldiers out here,” Root said. “I still can’t believe I made it.”

During the competition, soldiers put their endurance to the test with several hikes and marches, proved their marksmanship skills with various firearms, and fought each other in a combative tournament to determine the winners.

egnash.martin@stripes.com
Twitter: @Marty_Stripes

 

Soldiers rest between events near the base gym at the 2018 U.S. Army Europe Best Warrior Competition, Friday, Aug. 17, 2018, at Grafenwoehr, Germany.
MARTIN EGNASH/STARS AND STRIPES

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