Michigan National Guard Soldiers Receive Danish Marksmanship Badges

Members of 1st Battalion, 125th Infantry Regiment, Michigan National Guard, stand with 1LT Kim Illum, Danish Home Guard Forces, during a group photo following the Royal Danish Marksmanship award ceremony in Jaegerspris, Denmark, June 6, 2016. (Michigan National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Thomas Vega/Released)

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Story by Staff Sgt. Thomas Vega, 126th Press Camp

Jaegerspris, Denmark— Following a two day, intensive training session with Danish Home Guard forces which focused on individual rifle marksmanship, members of the Michigan Army National Guard’s, 1st Battalion, 125th Infantry Regiment, were given the opportunity to complete two different Danish marksmanship qualification events.

“We worked a lot on the basics of rifle marksmanship like breathing, holding our weapons, standing to fire and engaging targets at greater distances than we are used to. We focused on techniques that the Danish use for basic rifle marksmanship which use iron sights instead of combat optics that we tend to use. I know my personal marksmanship has improved because of what I learned here,” stated Spc. Zachary Young, 1st Battalion, 125th Infantry Regiment.

The first qualification event members of 1-125 Infantry attempted was the Danish Field Marksmanship Badge. The qualification event featured pop-up targets and required participants to engage and hit targets as far away as five hundred meters.

Spc. Carl Livingston, 1st Battalion, 125th Infantry Regiment, Michigan National Guard,  receives the Bronze Royal Danish Marksmanship Badge in Jaegerspris Denmark, June 6, 2016. (Michigan National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Thomas Vega/Released)

Spc. Carl Livingston, 1st Battalion, 125th Infantry Regiment, Michigan National Guard, receives the Bronze Royal Danish Marksmanship Badge in Jaegerspris, Denmark, June 6, 2016. (Michigan National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Thomas Vega/Released)

1st Lt. Steven Hoeksma, 1st Lt. Shawn Sells, Sgt. 1st Class Craig Verschragen, Staff Sgt. Frederick Griswold, Sgt. Brian Clark, Spc. Nicholas Ratajczak, Spc. Drew Holland, Spc. Daniel Travis, Spc. Brian Schneider, Spc. Carl Livingston, Spc. Zachary Young, Pfc. Ben Bozynski and Private Benjamin Serra qualified and were awarded the Danish Field Marksmanship Badge.

”Training Michigan forces in Danish marksmanship was great for me. I love to teach shooting and to see the results was very exciting,” stated Pernille Ugleberg, Danish Home Guard.
The second qualification event, the Danish Marksmanship Qualification, allowed Soldiers the ability to earn one of three different badges, Gold, Silver and Bronze, based on the number of points they accumulated during the qualification event.

1st Lt. Shawn Sells, 1st Battalion, 125th Infantry Regiment, Michigan National Guard,  receives the Bronze Royal Danish Marksmanship Badge in Jaegerspris, Denmark, June 6, 2016. (Michigan National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Thomas Vega/Released)

1st Lt. Shawn Sells, 1st Battalion, 125th Infantry Regiment, Michigan National Guard, receives the Bronze Royal Danish Marksmanship Badge in Jaegerspris, Denmark, June 6, 2016. (Michigan National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Thomas Vega/Released)

Staff Sgt. Timothy Sterk and Spc. Gregory Burr qualified for and were awarded a gold marksmanship badge; Spc. Drew Holland qualified for and was awarded a silver marksmanship badge; 1st Lt. Shawn Sells, 1st Lt. Joseph Enright, Staff Sgt. Frederick Griswold, Staff Sgt. Thomas Vega, Sgt. Dale Blackner, Sgt. Joseph White, Sgt. Brian Clark, Spc. Nicholas Ratajczak, Spc. Daniel Travis, Spc. Brian Schneider, Spc. Carl Livingston, Pfc. Ben Bozynski and Private Benjamin Serra qualified for and were awarded a bronze marksmanship badge.

As outlined in Army regulation 670-1, Soldiers who qualified for and were awarded Danish marksmanship badges will be allowed to display them on their Army dress uniforms.

More information on this training session and others the 1-125 Soldiers are experiencing in Denmark will be posted on the Michigan National Guard website, www.minationalguard.com.

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