Sunday, August 04, 2013

Face of Defense: DOD Employees Flex Muscles at Competition

George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies

ARENDSEE, Germany, Aug. 2, 2013 – Three Americans demonstrated their weight-lifting prowess at the German Strongwoman and the Arendsee Newcomer's Cup competitions here July 20.

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Aryn Lockhart performs a frame dead lift of 220 pounds. Photo by Lisa Bauer

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.
The U.S. competitors at the event included:

-- Aryn Lockhart, team lead for graphics at the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. Lockhart hails from Woodbridge, Va.;

-- Lockhart’s spouse, Matthias Martin, who’s an Army and Air Force Exchange Service concessionaire; and

-- Holli Van Camp, who works at the Edelweiss Lodge and Resort in Garmisch-Partenkirchen. Van Camp hails from Panama City, Fla.,
The trio represented the American community as they competed against 27 of the top amateur strength athletes in Germany.

Eighteen men and nine women battled it out through four events, including a keg toss, tire flip, overhead log press, and frame dead lift.

Although it was her first competition, Van Camp took an impressive third place among the women. Lockhart finished 8th, while Martin took 16th place.

"This was an amazing competition," Van Camp said. "Everyone is out here to have a great time and move a lot of weight. All of the athletes are amazingly supportive of one another."

Alternating between the men and women, each event required unique strength. The keg toss for the women consisted of three kegs weighing 22 pounds and one keg weighing 26 pounds that had to be thrown to a height of about 10 feet.

The men's event included five kegs ranging from 22-33 pounds that had to be thrown over a 17.8-foot bar. Technique and explosive power were critical skills in this event.

Next up was the tire flip. The women's tire weighed approximately 353 pounds, while the men's weighed twice as much. Competitors were required to flip the tire six times.

During the log press, participants had one minute to press an 88-pound (women) and 198-pound (men) log over their heads as many times as possible.

The final event was the frame dead lift. The women began the competition with 220 pounds and increased 44 pounds with each successful lift. The men began their dead lifts at 440 pounds, with 44-pound weight increases.

“The field was extremely competitive and athletes battled the heat and temperatures close to 90 degrees to compete during the four-hour event,” Lockhart said.

"This sport has always been an underground favorite," said Martin, who has been competing for 17 years.

"We're always hoping to find more competitors to welcome into this unique world. There really is nothing like it," he added.

The competition was sponsored by the German Federation of Strength Athletes.

17th SOS retires first Combat Shadow in Pacific

by Tech. Sgt. Kristine Dreyer
353rd Special Operations Group Public Affairs

7/25/2013 - KADENA AB, Japan -- A crew from the 17th Special Operations Squadron began the final flight of MC-130P Combat Shadow, tail 69-5825, July 18 from Kadena Air Base to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz.

"After having executed a wide variety of missions in the aircraft over the last 13 years, I have mixed emotions seeing her headed to retirement" said Lt. Col. Daniel Kobs, 17th Special Operations Squadron, operations officer. "While it is sad to see an aircraft that has accomplished so much leave operational service, it marks the beginning of an important AFSOC transformation in the Pacific as we usher in a new era of SOF airmen and capabilities."

With nearly 19,000 flying hours, tail 69-5825 has a long history in the European and Pacific theaters conducting both special operations and rescue missions. The aircraft is most noted for its participation in the evacuation after the eruption of Mount Pinatubo near Clarke Air Base, Philippines, in June 1991.

At that time, this aircraft was designated as an HC-130N. The HC-130N "King" was the only dedicated fixed-wing personnel recovery platform in the Air Force inventory.

In addition to its history, tail 69-5825 has a solid reputation among not only those who flew the aircraft but also those who maintained it. Senior Airman Robert Brown and Tech. Sgt. Anthony Rutt, 353rd Special Operations Maintenance Squadron 69-5825 designated crew chiefs, accompanied the aircraft to the Aircraft Maintenance and Regeneration Center, often called "the boneyard."

"I've been with the aircraft since it arrived in Kadena four years ago.  It's hard to watch it go," Brown said. "You get attached to these aircraft. You have pride in your own plane and the work you have put into it."

The retirement of tail 69-5825 begins the 353rd Special Operations Group's transition period for upgrading the MC-130 fleet.