Story by SGT Melissa Lessard on 09/17/2019By. Sgt. Melissa N. Lessard, 504th Expeditionary Military Intelligence Brigade Public Affairs
(Fort Hood, Texas, September 16, 2019)--During the early morning hours of September 5-6, 504th Expeditionary Military Intelligence Brigade maintenance teams gathered to conduct several events during the Ready Wrench Rumble.
The Ready Wrench Rumble consisted of several events: timed weapons assembly, instructing combatives, putting a radio into operation, an 8-mile ruck march with six events along the way, and finally more combatives. Each battalion and the brigade had a three man team for the competition.
Spc. Jovanni Rivera with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 504th E-MIB, said the two days was pretty hard. He said it has been the hardest competition since he has joined the BDE. He also said that the competition required teamwork.
The second day of the competition was the hardest according to several participants. The teams gathered at the motor pool before sunrise to have their rucks weighed. During the ruck march the Soldiers participated in several other events along the way. The first event was assembling a radio and establishing communications.
After the team established communications they grabbed a tow bar and rucked to their next event. One team carried the tow bar as a whole, other teams took the tow bar apart and carried pieces individually.
Once the teams made it to their next destination they immediately set off to change a tire on a vehicle. Three vehicles were staged to accompany the different teams. Once the tire was changed they marched to their next destination.
After dodging cattle to get to their next spot, the Soldiers were instructed to carry cans of water up the hill. Several points were made during this event: listen to instructions carefully, this has to be done as a team, and make it up the hill. If Soldiers did not listen to the instructions carefully they would put more work into an event that did not require as much effort.
When the Soldiers made their way back down the hill, they continued their ruck march to the cattle trail on West Fort Hood. They marched to the "Y" and back, where they were told a battle buddy was injured. The team then had to carry their buddy on the litter for approximately 100 meters.
The last event, according to the participants, was to march back to the unit and assemble a variety of weapons as fast as they could.
Little did the teams know they had an extra mystery event next; they would commence combatives for two purposes, bragging rights, and an award.
Soldiers said the Ready Wrench Rumble showed them the meaning of teamwork as well as other important aspects.
"Teamwork makes the dream work," Rivera said. "If it wasn't for teamwork we wouldn't be where we are right now. There were a lot of events that required teamwork; like the tow bar, it needed all three of us to carry that. The tire change; it takes two people to get that thing fast."
Spc. Eric Smith with Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 303rd MI Battalion, said the competition required a lot of teamwork, especially during the ruck march. In addition he thought the competition built camaraderie.
"I think the most important part of this competition was building camaraderie and teaching us not to give up during the ruck march," Smith said.
The team who won the overall competition was Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 504th E-MIB.