7/16/2014 6:00:00 AM Hale competes in Best Warrior Competition
Photo courtesy of Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System/U.S. Army Central
LAKEHURST, N.J. — The grass moves as the wind pushes slowly across the range. The peace is strange here. Not because it is beautiful, but because soon there will be controlled chaos. Quietly, Spc. Stanley Hale Jr. peers out into the berms. Targets will soon pop up from the mounds and he’ll get his chance to fire away.
Sgt. Benjamin John Special to the Times
LAKEHURST, N.J. - The grass moves as the wind pushes slowly across the range. The peace is strange here. Not because it is beautiful, but because soon there will be controlled chaos. Quietly, Spc. Stanley Hale Jr. peers out into the berms. Targets will soon pop up from the mounds and he'll get his chance to fire away.
"This will be a learning lesson," said Hale. "How can I take this and move forward?"
Hale took part in the 2014 U.S. Army Reserve Best Warrior Competition. At the time of this interview, he was about to begin the M16 night qualification event, one of many events that make up the entire competition. More than 40 soldiers came from across the U.S. Army Reserve to establish the best of the best. Only two soldiers will be proclaimed victors: one noncommissioned officer and one junior enlisted soldier. Both will advance to compete in the Department of the Army Best Warrior Competition.
"I see the bright side of things," said Hale. "I try to take advantage of a lot of the opportunities that have been given to me."
Before Hale joined the U.S. Army Reserve, he was in the U.S. Air Force as a logistics support supervisor. He now serves as a supply specialist with C Company 1-415th Drill Sergeant Battalion.
The ambition to become a Special Forces soldier is strong with Hale. He wants to be one of the best because he knows he can. In moments of physical stress, Hale excels and stands tall.
Hale says that he feels the same way at age 33 that he did at age 19. He attributes his strength and endurance to staying active. He spends a lot of his spare time in the gym, hiking or playing sports. Snowboarding is one of his favorite hobbies.
Staying fit and ready for anything are the skills he acquires from others. Every person Hale meets is an opportunity to learn.
"If you are patient and take the time, there is always something to learn," said Hale. "Regardless of how someone acts, there is something valuable in each person."
??Collecting these values and skills over time has made Hale into man he is today. Hale pushes himself slowly towards his goals and moves himself into positions of opportunity.
A small smile appears on Hale's face as he looks forward to the chaos that is about to take place. He remembers the skills he has learned up to this moment, and the people who helped him acquire them. He is excited for the future. No matter what it holds, he will look to find value in it.
Hale graduated from Palo Verde Valley High School in 1999. He is the son of Stanley Hale, Sr. of Blythe.