Camdenton VFW Post
My Challenge to the Country, I challenge everyone to take the time to research and try to understand what this great nation is about. Athenian democracy is the first known democracy in the world, giving the power to the people. Many years later our Founding fathers together with several other key players of their time, structured the American democracy and left a legacy that has shaped the world.
The 2015 DoD Warrior Games will feature eight sporting events with approximately 250 athletes representing teams from the Army, Marine Corps, Navy/Coast Guard, Air Force, U.S. Special Operations Command, and the British Armed Forces. Adaptive sports and athletic reconditioning activities play a fundamental role in the recovery, rehabilitation and reintegration of our service members and veterans. The events of the 2015 DoD Warrior Games promote the resiliency and warrior spirit of our wounded, ill, and injured service members, veterans, caregivers, and families.U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Samantha Goldenstein, St. Robert, Mo., takes the lead in the women’s upright cycling event during the 2015 Department of Defense Warrior Games at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va., June 21. The 2015 DOD Warrior Games are held from June 19-28. The games are an adaptive sports competition for wounded, ill and injured service members and veterans. Approximately 250 athletes, representing teams from the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Special Operations Command and the British Armed Forces will compete in archery, cycling, field, shooting, sitting volleyball, swimming, track and wheelchair basketball. (Photo by U.S. Army Pfc. Sandy Barrientos/Released)
This is a segment from his page:
Thanks for looking at my page and I hope if you are looking you will donate. For those of you who don’t know my mom had MS. I will never forget when I was 15 and I found out my mom had MS. She told me outside in the driveway of my house. It was also her last day at work as a police officer. I never really knew before that she was sick or having problems, I just knew my mom was very tired and had a really hard time seeing at night. Not really want you want when you are a female police officer in one of the bad parts of town. My mom explained to me that she had MS and things for her were going to be changing. She explained to me that I would need to help her out in the future since she might lose the ability to walk (or walk much). I remember her first episode a few months later. She was feeling pain in her legs, she told me it felt like someone was stabbing her in the legs with an “ice pick.” I will never forget that.
Later in life she would have episodes that would leave her pretty helpless and in bed. I had to cook for her and do all of the chores around the house. I had to listen to her in pain. I also went to MS support groups with her and tried to learn all that I could about her disease.
I remember when I 16 there was the MS bikeathon it was held at Wilmore park in South City and close to were I lived. I took my sign up sheet around the neighborhood and asked people to pledge to donate money for every mile I rode. I rode all day from the start until the finish that day only taking breaks for food and water and road 76.2 miles on my 10 speed. I felt good because I was helping my mom by getting money for research.
Well, the research has really helped and there are so many newer things my mom never got to try to help with the episodes and the pain of MS.
I’m going to ride the MS 150 this fall. I am raising money now so I can do my part in helping someone else’s mom. More women get MS than men. I will wear a cloth and attach it to my shirt my mom’s name and if you know someone with MS and donate let me know and I will put their name on it as well.
I have to be honest, this isn’t easy writing this since it brings back memories of my mom living with this disease. This is very emotional.
If you could all be so kind in supporting me in doing this I would appreciate your help. Their suggested goal is $250, but I think that goal sucks. I know way too many people who can help out even if it’s only a couple of dollars. Believe me, every dollar will mean a lot to me and I will thank each of you who donate.
Now to be my normal fun self. I need you all to get out your credit card and click on the link to donate. Don’t wait until tomorrow, I know you all too well. If you wait until tomorrow you will forget and then I will have to post on here a million times begging you all for money, so just take 2 minutes out of your day and donate.
Thanks for your consideration!
Love you all,
Missouri National Guard Soldiers sweep regional Best Warrior contest
By Staff Sgt. Ty Stafford
FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. – Two Missouri Soldiers took top honors when 14 Guardsmen from seven states competed in tests of physical and mental endurance during the annual Region V Best Warrior Competition at Fort Leonard Wood last week.
The competition promotes esprit de corps and recognizes noncommissioned officers (NCOs) and Soldiers who demonstrate commitment to the Army values, embody the warrior ethos, and represent the force of the future.
The Adjutant General of Missouri, Maj. Gen. Steve Danner, spoke highly of the competitors.
“It takes a lot of tenacity, commitment and courage to participate in this high-level event,” said Danner. “Only the best of the best from each state get to compete. Our Missouri Guardsmen represented the Show-Me State exceedingly well by earning the top spots. I’m also proud of the amazing job their coaches did, motivating them before and during the competition.”
The competition is divided into two categories – the enlisted best warrior and the noncommissioned officer competition. Seven Soldiers and seven noncommissioned officers from Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas competed for the honor of representing Region V in the National Competition at Camp Williams, Utah, June 22 – 25.
Soldiers must be in the ranks of private through specialist in order to compete in the Soldier category. Individuals competing for the NCO of the Year title include ranks of corporal through sergeant first class.
Each Soldier and NCO competed at various levels to include company, battalion, brigade and state, before representing their respective state at the Region V competition.
Prior to the regional competition, all the Missouri Soldiers and NCOs trained with Soldier coaches to better prepare for the events.
“Train up went well,” said Sgt. Dan Stevens, 1135th Engineer Company, who was the second place NCO in the state competition and acted as a coach for winner Staff Sgt. James Chevalier, 1128th Forward Support Company. “We were down here for four days taking apart weapons and putting them back together, going through medical lanes, and studying the 10-level task book.”
The competition is designed to test each individual on all facets of warrior skills including weapons qualification, physical fitness and knowledge of military topics. In the course of two and a half days, the competitors completed the following events: Army Physical Fitness Test, marksmanship evaluation, 12-mile road march carrying a 35-pound rucksack, obstacle course, day and night land navigation courses, warrior tasks evaluation, stress shoot, 500-word essay and an appearance board. Soldiers were awarded points or given a pass or fail for completing each phase of the competition.
The noncommissioned officer-in-charge of this year’s event, Sgt. 1st Class Cody Fields of the 140th Regimental Training Institute, said hosting the event was a welcome challenge.
“There are a lot more moving parts when the other states are working with you, but you get a lot of skills and knowledge with those outside entities,” said Fields.
Two regional trainers were requested from each state to help grading, evaluating and acting as observers and controllers.
“The competition went well,” said Fields. “All the competitors were in high spirits. They’re worn out but no complaining.”
In addition to the physical competitions, the Soldiers went before an appearance board comprised of senior command sergeants major from the region. The boards evaluated competitor appearance, military bearing and knowledge of Army doctrine.
The entire state is proud of the two Soldiers, said State Command Sgt. Major Will Pierce.
“This event proved to all that we have the best Army Guard Soldiers in a seven state region,” said Pierce. “Now it is time to put our best against the rest. I am confident we will be successful at the Army National Guard Best Warrior competition in Utah next month.”
For Spc. Christian Lindhardt, the regional enlisted Best Warrior winner from the 1135th Engineer Company, the competition was a stressful environment.
“It’s actually pretty cool and very intimidating as I am representing Missouri in our home state,” Lindhardt said. There is a lot of pressure, but I love every minute of it.”
After the smoke cleared and individual tasks completed, the regional Best Warriors had time to reflect on their accomplishments.
“I couldn’t have done it without my coaches, sponsors, family and friends behind me,” Chevalier said. “Especially the 1128th, 129th and the 110th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade supporting me.
Lindhardt agreed, saying each level of events had been challenging in their own way but the level of support from his leadership and NCOs was the contributing factor to where he’s at today.
Senior leaders concurred that the coaches made a significant difference for the competitors, said Pierce.
“Our coaches basically cared for, studied with and even completed the 12-mile road with their competitor,” Pierce said. “Our coaches are usually Best Warrior candidate themselves, but at this level, they take the role of support, cheerleader and coach. Both did an outstanding job and deserved the pride they felt when their warrior won.”
Pierce described how the competition has changed over the years.
“Years ago, we competed for Soldier and NCO of the Year,” said Pierce. “The competition was primarily an appearance board where military knowledge was tested. Today’s Best Warrior competition is a completely new game. The need for ‘whole Soldier,’ in response to our nation’s wars, has driven the competition to require so much more than just intellect. The new program requires competitors to be intelligent, athletic warriors. The skills, stamina and intellectual challenges make for amazing results. If you challenge warriors, they will rise to the task.”
Final Results for Best Warrior Noncommissioned Officers:
1st Place Staff Sgt. James Chevalier, Missouri
2nd Place Staff Sgt. Jason Winer, Nebraska
3rd Place Sgt. Seth Woodfield, Louisiana
Final Results for Best Warrior enlisted Soldiers:
1st Place Spc. Christian Lindhardt, Missouri
2nd Place Sgt. Scott Kuzminski, Nebraska
3rd Place Spc. Dillon Thomas, Oklahoma
Other competitors included:
Sgt. 1st Class Adam Anderson, Arkansas
Spc. Tyler Magie, Arkansas
Sgt. Matthew Copeland, Kansas
Spc. Karson Zeltwanger, Kansas
Spc. Andy Gonzalez, Louisiana
Sgt. Dakota Pruitt, Oklahoma
Sgt. Kevin Armbrester, Texas
Spc. Peter Schraff, Texas
Chaplain Gary Gilmore conducted a Memorial Day service in the Fallen Warrior Auditorium at Ike Skelton Training Site to pay tribute to our veterans made the ultimate sacrifice for freedom.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – The Civil Air Patrol’s Missouri Wing recently opened a new squadron in Warrensburg, the newest of 38 squadrons across the state.
In recent years, the Civil Air Patrol has had a critical role in state emergency duty missions, said Maj. Gen. Steve Danner, the Adjutant General.
“The Missouri National Guard has worked closely with the Civil Air Patrol during state emergencies such as the tornados and floods in 2011,” said Danner. “They are a vital asset in support of emergency response efforts.”
The patrol has approximately 1,200 members across the state, 10 light aircraft and 17 multi-purpose vehicles. These assets are available to federal, state and county governments, emergency responders and law enforcement agencies to perform search and rescue, homeland security, disaster relief, humanitarian assistance and counter-drug missions, said Col. John O’Neill, the commander of the Civil Air Patrol in Missouri.
“Our all-volunteer force of responders keeps costs down during state emergency missions,” O’Neill said. “It costs approximately $125 per hour to fly a civilian plane compared to approximately $600 – $1,000 per hour to fly a military aircraft.”
The patrol is an economic way to get images of the disaster area quickly and easily during state emergencies, said Danner.
“Their volunteer pilots can capture photos and videos to broadcast to civil authorities to assess damage and give situational awareness to those who can immediately respond,” said Danner. “Because the patrol is actively engaged, they have had an easier time securing funding for equipment like updated avionics.”
When an emergency happens, the patrol uses a Geospatial Information Interoperability Exploitation-Portable platform, better known as the GIIEP system, to give incident commanders in emergency situations real time images, said O’Neill.
“As technology continues to evolve with faster, better ways of communicating, we are reviewing the latest technology to ensure we can support the Guard’s mission during state emergency,” said O’Neill.
Continuing to increase the number of volunteers in the Civil Air Patrol is important, said O’Neill.
“In fact, retired Air Force officer Lt. Col. Tony Monetti was instrumental in organizing the new squadron in Warrensburg,” said O’Neill. “With his military experience in aviation, combined with his civilian role as the assistant dean of aviation at the University of Central Missouri, he was in a unique position to organize others who are interested in aviation in both the civilian and military sectors.”
The Civil Air Patrol is also known for its cadet programs, which use aviation as a cornerstone to provide aerospace education, leadership training and physical fitness to young people from 12 – 18 years old.
“The Missouri National Guard has recruited many cadets to the Air Guard through the years,” said Danner. “Because of their excellent leadership training, those cadets who earn cadet officer status may enter the Air Force as an airman first class, rather than an airman basic, upon graduation from basic training. We look forward to continuing to work closely with our partners at the Missouri Wing of the Civil Air Patrol,” said Danner.
NAVAL AIR STATION SIGONELLA, Italy – A team of U.S Marines and Coast Guardsmen, with Special-Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response-Africa, worked with more than 25 Ghanaian Sailors in small-boat operations and maintenance at the Sigondi Western Naval Base in Ghana, April 13-24, 2015.
Previously, the U.S. Coast Guard gave the Ghanaian Navy five 27-foot Defender-class boats to aid their operations; recently, four of the five boats had been removed from the water due to maintenance issues.
“Our main focus was teaching them how to repair the boats and keep them in operational condition,” said Chief Warrant Officer 2 Tim Kessler, the mission officer-in-charge.
Of the four inoperable boats, two had been capsized and were damaged beyond repair. To ensure prime performance from the one Defender-class available for use, the Marines and Coast Guardsmen introduced the idea of constant conservation.
Throughout the two-week evolution, the service members would routinely pull the working boat from the water, and conduct preventative maintenance on the craft.
The collective effort of the U.S. and Ghanaian service members resulted in effectively salvaging one of the formerly inoperable boats.
As the training began, the service members were initially impressed by the younger sailors’ ability to take care of their boats. However, the sailors required more advanced methods of engine and boat maintenance in order to keep their boats functioning. For the Marines and Coast Guardsmen, understanding the differences in operational procedures with the Ghanaians contributed to mission success.
“[The Ghanaians] showed us right off the bat they understood the fundamentals and could handle basic maintenance issues,” said Kessler. “We were able to build on that and teach them advanced maintenance techniques that will help them keep their boats in better operating condition and help salvage inoperable boats.”
The advanced training was accomplished by integrating the procedures used by both nations’ mechanics and supplementing the skills already used by the Ghanaian Sailors.
“We provided them solutions they can accomplish without significant influence from our techniques,” said Kessler. “We were open to how they fix things in the Ghanaian Navy vice how the United States Marine Corps or Coast Guard would do a similar thing.”
Story by Sgt. Brandy Mort
FORT KNOX, Ky. – The terrain rumbled as pieces of a wooden door shot out in every direction. From the looks of the scene, you’d think a tornado had ravaged the area. Instead, it was a silhouette charge the 577th Sapper Company had attached during their demolition training.
Soldiers of the 201st Engineer Battalion, 577th Sapper Company, participated in standard demolition training at Fort Knox, Kentucky, May 15-16.
Capt. James Schmitz, 577th Sapper commander, said Sapper teams are essential for troops to advance through breached obstacles, such as a collapsed building, safely. He said this training helped when they deployed to Afghanistan in 2009.
“Proper demolition training is very essential,” said Schmitz. “It is vital to get it right before we are tasked to do it in the future, whether it’s for our training exercise in Louisiana or a future deployment. We need to do it right, here, so we can do it right, there.”
Sgt. John Howard, Sapper noncommissioned officer, has 10 years experience in the engineers. It’s that experience, he said, that keeps the unit proficient. He said, each year, leadership uses lessons learned to improve the training.
“When I was new, I got vital training during this time, and I use things I have learned through the years as I teach other junior enlisted to do the same,” he said.
Traditionally, Sappers are combat engineers who advance with the front-line infantry and are some of the first people sent to assess damages caused. Howard said training the younger Soldiers in their craft is similar to the role of the combat engineer sweeping the battlefield; they make sure the path is safe and clear before others go through.
“As a Sapper, we are the first people sent into the building to ensure the foundation is stable,” said Howard. “I use the same method as a platoon sergeant. If I don’t tell them the proper information, they won’t be able to be a strong foundation for their legacy.”
Staff Sgt. Aleksandr Vinogradov, a combat engineer, agrees that good leaders start from the beginning of their career.
“New Soldiers to the unit are like sponges,” said Vinogradov. “They will absorb anything you teach them. It is important to set a good example and train them the correct. We need to train for the future, not for the present.”
The team trained in various types of C-4 charges: A simulation charge, shape charges, Bangalore charges, urban breaching and mine clearing, also known as, MCLC. During urban breaching, they learned about linear door charges and silhouette charges. Sappers use what they learn in these scenarios for reforming the terrain for new structures, or to demolish existing structures.
“During urban breaching, we are able to see that different charges do different things,” said Howard. “A linear door charge will split a door in half, while a silhouette charge will create a hole in the door big enough for a person to walk through. If we don’t use the correct one in a non-training environment, we may be in trouble.”
Schmidtz said that safety and proficiency are two very important topics he focuses on at all times.
“My goal is to have everyone perform proficiently at their tasks and, most importantly, practice proper safety at all times. I have no doubt that my Soldiers will succeed in both aspects, whether in training exercises or in real-world scenarios.”
The Sapper Company is participating in this training in preparation for their annual training at the Joint Readiness Training Center in Fort Polk, Louisiana.
ST. LOUIS – The Missouri National Guard Public Affairs Office will host a press conference for the daughter of Medal of Honor recipient Sgt. William Shemin at the Jewish Federation of St. Louis. Sgt. Shemin will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courage, his daughter, Elsie Shemin-Roth, is accepting on his behalf.
Sgt. Shemin will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously for his courageous actions while serving as a rifleman with G Company, 2d Battalion, 47th Infantry Regiment, 4th Division, American Expeditionary Forces, in connection with combat operations against an armed enemy on the Vesle River, near Bazoches, France from August 7 to August 9, 1918. Sgt. Shemin left cover and crossed open space, repeatedly exposing himself to heavy machine-gun and rifle fire, to rescue wounded. After Officers and Senior Noncommissioned Officers had become casualties, Sgt. Shemin took command of the platoon and displayed great initiative under fire until wounded on August 9.
Media are encouraged to attend the press conference on Wednesday, May 20, at the Jewish Federation of St. Louis, 12 Millstone Campus Dr., St. Louis, Mo., 63146. Media are asked to arrive no later than 9:45 a.m. and the press conference is scheduled to begin promptly at 10 a.m. Please allow time to get through security.
Ms. Shemin-Roth will not be available for interviews or comments prior to this press conference and media are asked to respect her privacy and not contact her directly. There may be limited opportunities for individual interviews after the news conference by request. At the request of the family, all media requests for subsequent interviews should be made through the Missouri National Guard public affairs office at (573) 638-9846 or email@example.com.