2018 Hard as Hell Heroes 2 | Stage 7

The 2018 Hard as Hell Heroes 2 Gun match was held May 12th and 13th  at the Southern Utah Practical Shooting Range  with KE Arms as the overall match sponsor.  Each stage was dedicated to a different Medal of Honor recipient, with elements of the stage being influenced by the particular citation to accompany the award of that particular recipient.

This article brought to you today by KE Arms (@ke_arms), an Arizona based 07 FFL/Class 2 SOT.Reminder: United States on Apple iOS 11.3  🎆 Use Coupon Code BBCKE18 at the checkout of KEArms.com for 10% off.  🎆  United States on Apple iOS 11.3

Continued from Stage 6 (Sgt. John Chapman and Amn. Jason Cunningham). 

This will be the Seventh in of a series of posts. In this series, we’ll be taking you through the match stage by stage with the shooter’s from KE ArmsIndependence Training, and We Plead the 2nd, with video coverage from InRange TV.  IRTV’s Karl Kasarda’s usual c0-host, Ian McCollum, was out of the country during this event so KE Arm’s Marketing Director Russell Phagan (aka SinistralRifleman) stepped in to co-host these match videos.

Stage 7 Was inspired by the actions of Roy Benavidez

Master Sergeant (then Staff Sergeant) Roy P. BENAVIDEZ United States Army, distinguished himself by a series of daring and extremely valorous actions on 2 May 1968 while assigned to Detachment B56, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces, Republic of Vietnam.

On the morning of 2 May 1968, a 12-man Special Forces Reconnaissance Team was inserted by helicopters of the 240th Assault Helicopter Company in a dense jungle area west of Loc Ninh, Vietnam to gather intelligence information about confirmed large-scale enemy activity. This area was controlled and routinely patrolled by the North Vietnamese Army. After a short period of time on the ground, the team met heavy enemy resistance, and requested emergency extraction. Three helicopters attempted extraction, but were unable to land due to intense enemy small arms and anti-aircraft fire.

Sergeant BENAVIDEZ was at the Forward Operating Base in Loc Ninh monitoring the operation by radio when these helicopters, of the 240th Assault Helicopter Company, returned to off-load wounded crew members and to assess aircraft damage. Sergeant BENAVIDEZ voluntarily boarded a returning aircraft to assist in another extraction attempt. Realizing that all the team members were either dead or wounded and unable to move to the pickup zone, he directed the aircraft to a nearby clearing where he jumped from the hovering helicopter, and ran approximately 75 meters under withering small arms fire to the crippled team.

Prior to reaching the team’s position he was wounded in his right leg, face, and head. Despite these painful injuries, he took charge, repositioning the team members and directing their fire to facilitate the landing of an extraction aircraft, and the loading of wounded and dead team members. He then threw smoke canisters to direct the aircraft to the team’s position. Despite his severe wounds and under intense enemy fire, he carried and dragged half of the wounded team members to the awaiting aircraft. He then provided protective fire by running alongside the aircraft as it moved to pick up the remaining team members. As the enemy’s fire intensified, he hurried to recover the body and classified documents on the dead team leader.

When he reached the leader’s body, Sergeant BENAVIDEZ was severely wounded by small arms fire in the abdomen and grenade fragments in his back. At nearly the same moment, the aircraft pilot was mortally wounded, and his helicopter crashed. Although in extremely critical condition due to his multiple wounds, Sergeant BENAVIDEZ secured the classified documents and made his way back to the wreckage, where he aided the wounded out of the overturned aircraft, and gathered the stunned survivors into a defensive perimeter. Under increasing enemy automatic weapons and grenade fire, he moved around the perimeter distributing water and ammunition to his weary men, reinstilling in them a will to live and fight. Facing a buildup of enemy opposition with a beleaguered team, Sergeant BENAVIDEZ mustered his strength, began calling in tactical air strikes and directed the fire from supporting gunships to suppress the enemy’s fire and so permit another extraction attempt.

He was wounded again in his thigh by small arms fire while administering first aid to a wounded team member just before another extraction helicopter was able to land. His indomitable spirit kept him going as he began to ferry his comrades to the craft. On his second trip with the wounded, he was clubbed from behind by an enemy soldier. In the ensuing hand-to-hand combat, he sustained additional wounds to his head and arms before killing his adversary. He then continued under devastating fire to carry the wounded to the helicopter. Upon reaching the aircraft, he spotted and killed two enemy soldiers who were rushing the craft from an angle that prevented the aircraft door gunner from firing upon them. With little strength remaining, he made one last trip to the perimeter to ensure that all classified material had been collected or destroyed, and to bring in the remaining wounded.

Only then, in extremely serious condition from numerous wounds and loss of blood, did he allow himself to be pulled into the extraction aircraft. Sergeant BENAVIDEZ’ gallant choice to join voluntarily his comrades who were in critical straits, to expose himself constantly to withering enemy fire, and his refusal to be stopped despite numerous severe wounds, saved the lives of at least eight men. His fearless personal leadership, tenacious devotion to duty, and extremely valorous actions in the face of overwhelming odds were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service, and reflect the utmost credit on him and the United States Army.

Stage 7 Video Coverage Courtesy of InRange

 

Independence Training's Josh Reeves engages long range rifle steel with his KE-15 Shooting Team Rifle equipped with Vortex Razor 1-6X
Independence Training’s Josh Reeves engages long range rifle steel with his KE-15 Shooting Team Rifle equipped with Vortex Razor 1-6X
Independence Training's Glen Stilson engages pistol targets out to 50 yards with KE19 equipped with Leupold Deltapoint Pro
Independence Training’s Glen Stilson engages pistol targets out to 50 yards with KE19 equipped with Leupold Deltapoint Pro
KE Arms' Jordan Henderson Engages long range rifle targets with KE-15 Shooting Team Rifle equipped with Vortex Razor 1-6x
KE Arms’ Jordan Henderson Engages long range rifle targets with KE-15 Shooting Team Rifle equipped with Vortex Razor 1-6x
InRange TV's Karl Kasarda engages far pistol targets with Hudson H9 milled by KE Arms to accept Leupold Deltapoint Pro
InRange TV’s Karl Kasarda engages far pistol targets with Hudson H9 milled by KE Arms to accept Leupold Deltapoint Pro

United States on Apple iOS 11.3  🎆 🎆 🎆 Use Coupon Code BBCKE18 at the checkout of KEArms.com for 10% off.  🎆 🎆 🎆  United States on Apple iOS 11.3

Find the entire Hard as Hell Heroes Two Gun Match series here:

All stages of the Hard as Hell Heroes Two Gun Match are based on the actions of Medal of Honor recipients - read up.

Now, here are a few more pretty pictures for you knuckledraggers.

Stage 7 Photo Gallery.  Photos Courtesy of Bryan Welch/We Plead the 2nd.

 

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Russell Phagan

Breach-Bang-Clear contributor Russell Phagan has been working in the firearms industry since 2001 when he was introduced to action shooting sports in general and 3 Gun in particular. He views competition shooting as a valuable activity not only for personal development and gaining professional knowledge but also how to improve firearms products and make them more user friendly and effective. Combining the practical use of firearms with testing out new product ideas and technology is one of the things he enjoys most about 3 Gun. Phagan also believes anyone can become reasonably good at it if they devote the time and resources to do so. "Winning, while nice, need not be your goal; bettering yourself through the pursuit of excellence is something we all can achieve" Russell Phagan Though is his demeanor usually ranges somewhere between taciturn and staid, Phagan is nonetheless a good man to know and listen to. Sometimes he even smiles, or so we hear. Find the Sinistral Rifleman online here or follow him on the Instergramz (@sinistralrifleman). He's on the Book of Face at /SinistralRifleman/.


Russell Phagan has 10 posts and counting. See all posts by Russell Phagan

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