Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point --
Anyone can run, but everything changes when running for your life through an obstacal course with zombies at your heels during Cherry Point’s All Terrain Unit Competition Oct. 25 at the Piranha Pit.
Eighteen teams of Marines and Sailors gathered to maneuver through the various obstacles including sled pulls, squad pushups, mud pits and, to the runners surprise, zombies.
“The zombies added a new way for everyone to get into the run,” said Berna Crosby, the Marine Corps community service Semper Fit special event coordinator for Cherry Point.
Each team received four flags that symbolized a times bonus, that is of course if they could make it out. For every flag that crossed, the finish line was intended to cut off a minute from the teams final time, but the zombies did not make this easy.
“We weren’t trying to protect any flags,” said Sgt. Joshua L. Jones, the team captain of “Suits and Boots.” “We were trying to get out of the way.”
Competitors also dressed for the costume contest that coincided with the race.
Taking home the gold for the best costumes were “The Dental Sentinels”. The all-Navy team comprised of dentists from bases all over the East Coast.
“We figured we’d make fun of ourselves,” said Lt. Inga M. Keithly, team captain of the Dental Sentinels. “At one point we we’re standing in the front the line and someone said we had the scariest costumes, being dentists.”
In regards to the actual course competition, taking home all first, second, and third places were the Center for Naval Aviation Technical Training fielded three teams and took home 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place.
“The course was fun, challenging at some points, but overall a completely great time,” said Pfc. Ian Kelly, a CNATT student aboard Cherry Point. “When we had to bear crawl through the water was the best part of the course.”
The CNATT instructors keep the students in top physical condition, said Pfc. Vincent R. Moschelle, a CNATT student on the first place team.
The course built some esprit de corps with our brothers in arms, said Jones.
“The best part was the camaraderie,” said Keithly.”We have males and females, both officer and enlisted, from different dental clinics coming together, just making it a fun event.”
Even before taking all three award places, CNATT felt very confident in themselves and their ability to win.
“The (Commanding Officer) said he wanted gold, and we said ‘not a problem’,” said Moschelle.