By Tech. Sgt. Stacy Foster
50th Space Wing Public Affairs
The 22nd Space Operations Squadron will once again represent the 50th Space Wing during the 2010 Guardian Challenge competition.
During a score posting event held in the main fitness center Feb. 1, scores for each of the competing teams were revealed slowly, as numbers flashed across a giant screen, finally settling and revealing the score for the winning squadron, 22nd SOPS.
The Guardian Challenge competition traces its roots to Strategic Air Command. It began in 1967 as a missile combat competition between combat crews and combat targeting and aligning teams and was called “Curtain Raiser.” The competition was renamed Guardian Challenge in 1994 to reflect Air Force Space Command’s motto, “Guardians of the High Frontier.” Today, the competition pits the best space operations crew, security forces team, and space communication team against each other and determines the top space wing teams in the Air Force.
In the last competition held in 2008, 50th Space Wing brought home the Aldridge trophy, awarded to the best space operations wing in Air Force Space Command.
Several squadrons competed for a chance to represent the Wing in this year’s competition, including a combined crew from 2nd and 19th SOPS, and crews from 3rd and 4th SOPS.
Each crew was evaluated on their ability to deal with multiple scenarios, beyond the level normally seen in training or daily operations. Each team began with 900 points and lost points for each critical or major error. The squadron with the highest remaining score was chosen to represent the wing in the space operations portion of the competition.
“The space operations shoot-out was very competitive,” said Lt. Col. Lane Gilchrist, 50th Space Wing Guardian Challenge project officer. “The event truly showcased the best crews and gave each a chance to hone their skills.”
Along with 22nd SOPS, 50th Security Forces Squadron and the 50th Space Communications Squadron will represent the wing in their respective areas of expertise.
Competing in this year’s Guardian Challenge from the 22nd Space Operations Squadron are: Captains John Meury, and Dan Harper, Marty Reed, and Will Smith.
“I’m proud of the team for their accomplishment, and it’s an honor for the squadron to represent the wing again at the MAJCOM-level competition,” said Lt. Col. Eric Dorminey, 22nd Space Operations Squadron commander.
The team will now spend the next two months training to prepare for the Air Force Space Command-level competition.