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 September 24, 2010

People

181st Infantry Brigade paintball event raises money for upcoming unit ball

By 1st Lt. Jeffrey Gruidl, 181st Infantry Brigade, Public Affairs Office

FORT McCOY, Wis. — On the morning of Sept. 2, officers and noncommissioned officers (NCOs) from 1st Battalion, 338th Infantry Regiment provided esprit de corps and raised money for the 181st Infantry Brigade ball by volunteering as “ducks on the pond.”

PHOTO: Master Sgt. Scott Feucht, 181st Infantry Brigade, fires paintballs during the 1st Battalion, 338th Infantry Regiment-sponsored “Ducks on the Pond” paintball fundraiser at Fort McCoy. Photo by Master Sgt. Jerome M. DeBarge
Master Sgt. Scott Feucht, 181st Infantry Brigade, fires paintballs during the 1st Battalion, 338th Infantry Regiment-sponsored “Ducks on the Pond” paintball fundraiser at Fort McCoy. (Photo by Master Sgt. Jerome M. DeBarge)

The “pond” was a portion of the Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation (Family and MWR) paintball field at the Whitetail Ridge Ski Area; the “ducks” were officers and NCOs from the 1st, 338th, who were auctioned off to run through the paintball field while dodging paintballs.

Soldiers from the brigade bid on the right to shoot paintballs at selected teams. The winning bidders were given approximately 50 paintballs to shoot at the unarmed ducks as they ran a grueling lap down and back on the football-field-length course while trying to avoid a paintball assault.

The biggest draw was the opportunity to shoot at the team of outgoing 181st Headquarters and Headquarters Company Commander Maj. Dale Punzel and 1st Sgt. Daniel O’Rourke.

The second-largest draw was the chance to shoot at the team of Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Timothy Schnese and Sgt. Maj. Bruce Verdone. Master Sgt. Scott Feucht from Headquarters and Headquarters Company of the 181st was excited about the opportunity to shoot at the team of Schnese and Verdone by taunting Verdone with, “You better run faster than that old man.”

The team of Sgt. 1st Class Steven Bliss and Maj. Stephen Heinz, who proudly wore Minnesota Vikings jerseys, may have been the most provocative team at the event.

“In a state where it is all about the Packers, we were the only ones that stood up for our team. Vikings 1, Packers 0,” Heinz said. Near the end of the event, rain started to fall, but the enthusiasm of the participants did not stop. In fact, the rain helped create a slippery grass course.

In the end, the event raised more than $500 for the brigade ball. Members of the 1st, 338th, expressed their appreciation to the employees at Fort McCoy Family and MWR for their support of the event.

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