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Home > UNS > 140203-02



528th Sustainment Brigade (Airborne) holds Jumpmaster of the Year competition

By Jerry Green
528th Sustainment Brigade Public Affairs

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (USASOC News Service, Feb. 3, 2014) - All Airborne Soldiers have heard the commands, usually over the deafening roar of the C-130 turbo-prop aircraft or the whooshing rotors of the MH-60 Blackhawk. "Get Ready! Stand Up!
Hook up! Check Static Lines! Sound off for equipment checks! Stand By!"

With those words, all attention stays directed  to the one individual in the back of the aircraft who is now the commander, the leader, the person in charge and ultimately responsible for every paratrooper exiting the aircraft—the jumpmaster. Jumpmasters are expert paratroopers who train and instruct the proper methods to exit an aircraft in airborne units.

The 528th Sustainment Brigade (Airborne) challenged the jumpmasters in the brigade and the subordinate 112th Special Operations Signal Battalion to find the one jumpmaster who would be designated Jumpmaster of the Year.

"The purpose of the 528th Jumpmaster of the Year competition was to determine who is the best of the best jumpmasters in the brigade by completing specific jumpmaster skill challenges testing each jumpmaster in a timely manner with safety of the paratrooper paramount," said Sgt. 1st Class Steven G. Tischer, who coordinated the jumpmaster competition.

Five jumpmasters entered the competition that started with a nomenclature test with each jumpmaster completing a 25 question test on the essential names and descriptions of the parachute components.

Next, the rigging event challenged the contestants on proper rigging of three different forms of combat equipment; this was a timed event.

At the last station of the competition, each jumpmaster performed the all important equipment checks on Soldiers rigged ready to jump.

After the numbers were calculated from each challenge, the winner of the 528th Jumpmaster of the Year was announced during ceremonies at the United States Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School auditorium.

Staff Sgt. Seth D. Williams, Special Operations Medical Detachment, was named the 528th Sustainment Brigade (Airborne) Jumpmaster of the Year.

"This was a tough competition," said Williams. "I think the scoring was close at each station, but I think the biggest challenge was the final Soldier inspection checks. That is the last chance the jumpmaster gets to check the paratrooper and it has to be right."

"I have always considered the jumpmaster to be the ultimate leader," said 528th Sustainment Brigade's Command Sgt. Maj. Bobby Hagy. "The jumpmaster is the one Soldier responsible for the lives of those Soldiers who consciously jump out of an aircraft in flight."