Story and photos by Sgt. William Smith
4th Infantry Division Public Affairs Office
The 73rd Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo kicked off with Army appreciation night at the Norris-Penrose Event Center, July 10, celebrating military service to the nation.
“I want to thank the community leaders and volunteers who are part of this great effort in recognizing the outstanding competence of the Soldiers we have at Fort Carson,” said Col. David Grosso, garrison commander, Fort Carson. “Most of all, I would like to thank all of the Families here. It is truly one of the hardest jobs in the Army to be a spouse of a Soldier and hold down the homefront, especially over the last 12 years of war.”
Grosso and Command Sgt. Maj. Steven O. Green, senior enlisted adviser, Fort Carson, presented 57 Soldiers with outstanding service medallions before the rodeo at the Salute our Troops Medallion Presentation Ceremony.
The Soldiers, all staff sergeant and below, were selected by their respective chains of command for special recognition for their hard work.
The ceremony is sponsored by the Interquest Rotary Club, which for the last 11 years has rewarded local enlisted servicemembers for their service to the nation, said Tony Fagnant, event chairman, Salute our Troops, Interquest Rotary Club.
“For the Rotary to be able to recognize these Soldiers at the local level and let them know how much we appreciate all they do for us is a gift,” Fagnant said.
After the presentation, the Soldiers marched into the rodeo arena as part of the opening ceremonies.
“I am really excited about the opportunity to represent my unit,” said Spc. Jordan Goslin, 60th Ordinance Company, 68th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 43rd Sustainment Brigade. “To receive this much support from the community for what we do on a day-to-day basis feels really amazing.”
The 4th Infantry Division and Fort Carson Mounted Color Guard presented the nation’s colors and Staff Sgt. Daedra Stonerock, 4th Inf. Div. and Fort Carson Mounted Color Guard, sang the national anthem during the opening ceremony. Brig. Gen. James Rainey, deputy commanding general for maneuver, 4th Inf. Div. and Fort Carson, welcomed the rodeo audience.
“I want to thank the Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo committee, the Range Riders and all of our great friends in Colorado Springs for coming out and supporting the members of our Army … God Bless America; let’s rodeo,” Rainey said.
The day prior to the event, Fort Carson Soldiers participated in the annual Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo Parade in Colorado Springs.
Soldiers were involved in the actual rodeo events as well. A four-man team from the 52nd Engineer Battalion participated in the wild cow milking competition. The competition consists of chasing down a cow straight from the range and attempting to milk it. The first successful team is proclaimed the winner.