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NEWS | July 28, 2018

116th IBCT NCOs finish first, second at National Best Warrior Competition

By Cotton Puryear JFHQ Public Affairs

Kentucky and Virginia National Guard Soldiers assigned to the Staunton-based 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team took first and second place as the top noncommissioned officers in the country at the 2018 Army National Guard Best Warrior Competition held July 24-27, 2018, at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania. Sgt. Jordy Brewer, a Kentucky Soldier assigned to Barbourville, Kentucky-based 1st Battalion, 149th Infantry Regiment, 116th IBCT finished first, and Sgt. Jake Moyer, a Virginia Soldier assigned to Winchester-based 3rd Battalion, 116th Infantry Regiment, 116th IBCT came in second.

“I couldn’t be more pleased by the performance of Sgt. Jordy Brewer and Sgt. Jake Moyer,” said Col. Joseph Dinonno, commander of the 116th IBCT. “Their preparation and execution set the example for other Soldiers to follow and demonstrates once again why the Stonewall Brigade is one of the best brigades in the Army. This also highlights the strong bond between Kentucky and Virginia as our respective battalions continue to share the hardships and camaraderie of an increasing training tempo.”

Spc. Bailey Ruff, a tactical power generation specialist with the South Dakota Army Guard’s 842nd Engineering Company, earned the title of the Army National Guard Soldier of the Year.

Fourteen Soldiers and NCOs from New York, Virginia, Maryland, Kentucky, Georgia, Illinois, Wisconsin, Arkansas, Nebraska, Oregon, South Dakota, Colorado and Utah took part in the 16-event competition which included formal board interviews, physical fitness challenges, written exams and warrior tasks and battle drills to test the whole-Soldier concept.

Brewer and Ruff will represent the National Guard at the 2018 Best Warrior Competition  scheduled for Sept. 30 to Oct. 5, 2018, at Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia. They will be among 22 of the Army’s finest warriors, representing 11 commands from across the Army, competing to be the 2018 Department of the Army NCO and Soldier of the Year.

During the six-day competition, they will test their knowledge, skills and abilities by conquering urban warfare simulations, demonstrating critical thinking, formal board interviews, physical fitness challenges, written exams, and warrior tasks and battle drills relevant to today’s operating environment.

Col. Joseph Dinonno and Command Sgt. Maj. Henry Motley, the 116th IBCT command team, presented challenge coins to the Soldiers July 26 in recognition of their outstanding duty performance.

Kentucky National Guard Soldiers assigned to 1st Battalion, 149th Infantry conducted a patching ceremony to mark their affiliation with the 116th IBCT Oct. 15, 2017, in Artemus, Kentucky. The Mountain Warriors are the third infantry maneuver battalion for the brigade. The 116th IBCT Soldiers are part of the 29th Infantry Division, and wear the 29th’s historic “blue and gray” patch.

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