Rescue defender represents 920th Rescue Wing in international shooting competition

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Kelly Goonan, 920th Rescue Wing Public Affairs

Technical Sgt. Wesley Mine, 920th Security Forces Squadron rescue defender, was chosen as one of only five Air Force Reservists to showcase marksmanship at the Danish Army’s annual international shooting competition at Halk Range in Hadersley, Denmark in June.

Over the course of the two-day event 100 participants, spread across 26 teams, from eight countries engaged in five events that tested their shooting abilities. Each event required a different skill, ranging from long-range precision shooting to rapid-fire accuracy, demanding exceptional focus and control as they aimed to secure top spots in each competition. Mine was awarded the Danish marksmanship badge for the individual pistol competition.

“What was most challenging about this competition was the extreme distances we had to engage targets with weapons we had no opportunity to zero in the sights on. In addition, ammunition was limited to small quantities at each stage of the event, so if you missed, you missed; little to no make-up shots were available,” said Mine.

To “zero in” a weapon sight means to adjust it, typically using dials or screws to manipulate for elevation and windage, so that the point of aim aligns with the point of impact. This is a necessary process to ensure accuracy when using firearms or other weapons with sights.

“Last year, I was able to go to an Army base in Wyoming for a week-long firearms class that ended with a competition as well, which I won. I don’t think I would have been accepted to participate in this event without having won that competition in Wyoming last year,” he said.

Prior to the competition Mine spent a lot of time honing his skills with the M18 pistol, firing at intermediate to far distances, which he says taught him much more about the capabilities of the Air Force’s newest pistol of choice. The M17 and M18 pistols, collectively known as the Modular Handgun System, were adopted by the U.S. military as its new service pistols in recent years. The decision to adopt the MHS was primarily driven by the need to replace the aging and outdated M9 pistols, which had been in service since the 1980s.

In addition to Mine, the other Airmen chosen to represent at the Danish competition were Master Sgt. Eric Ellis assigned to Joint Base Lewis-McCord, Washington, Master Sgt. Adam Tremblay assigned to Westover Air Reserve Base, Massachusetts, Tech. Sgt. Caleb Giddings assigned to Dobbins ARB, Georgia, and Tech. Sgt. Nikolas Infante assigned to Homestead ARB, Florida.

The 920th Security Forces Squadron trains to meet wartime mission requirements while providing support assistance to its active-duty counterparts. The Squadron deploys security forces defenders to provide Airbase defense, physical security, law enforcement, and resource protection missions in any climate or location. As a squadron within the 920th Rescue Wing, its rescue Airmen are also trained to carry out and execute the wings mission to plan, lead, and conduct military rescue operations and missions to deny competitors and adversaries exploitation of isolated personnel.