|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.”
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
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
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
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
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.