US soldiers in Europe, Africa compete in Best Warrior Challenge

The winners of the U.S. Army Europe Best Warrior Challenge Lt. Christian Reeves, left, CW2 Kristopher Gillespie, Sgt. Jonathan Renteria, and Spc. Jacob Henriksen, right, stand after receiving their trophies, Aug. 25, 2017, at Grafenwoehr, Germany. Martin Egnash/Stars and Stripes


By MARTIN EGNASH | STARS AND STRIPES Published: August 25, 2017

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — The U.S. Army announced on Friday the winners of a grueling five-day contest that tested troops on their fundamental soldiering skills.

Twenty-two U.S. soldiers from across Europe and Africa competed in the U.S Army Europe Best Warrior Challenge. The competitors had to fire a variety of weapons, demonstrate first-aid procedures, and push themselves through several physical training challenges to make it to the end.

The soldiers competed in four categories; soldier, noncommissioned officer, warrant officer and officer. The winners were Spc. Jacob Henriksen, Sgt. Jonathan Reneria, CW2 Kristopher Gillespie, and Lt. Christian Reeves.

Henriksen and Reneria will go on to represent U.S. Army Europe in the Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition at Fort A.P. Hill, Va., in early October.

“For me, reaching the end of my career in the Army, it’s just great to see these soldiers still have these skills at such a high level,” said Sgt. Maj. Micheal Sutterfield, sergeant major of the Army’s 21st theater Sustainment Command. “It’s a tough challenge, and we really don’t let up on them during the competition. It’s a huge honor for the soldiers competing here in Europe and the ones moving on to the Army event in October.”

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Lt. Christopher Finseth, a soldier with U.S. Army Africa, fires a 50-caliber machine gun during the U.S. Army Europe Best Warrior Challenge, Aug. 22, 2017, at Grafenwoehr, Germany. Martin Egnash/Stars and Stripes

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