June 20, 1940
Today was a very, very tough day. We were awoken early in the morning to get ready for the big race. Surprisingly, my unit got up faster than anyone else. Apparently, the other units hadn’t taken advantage of the relaxed evening and gone to bed early. They probably had stayed up all night joking and playing cards.
Anyway, my unit got to the mess hall and made our lunches for the day. Just as we were starting to leave the building, all the other units staggered sleepily. After about 10 minutes, everyone was assembled out on the lawn in front of the office building. The captain told us the rules to abide by, where to go, and reminded us of the prize. Then, each unit lined up to receive their weapons and ammunition. I saw my teammates around me hurriedly grabbing automatic guns, but I chose to take a semi-automatic handgun and a scoped rifle.
After every unit had collected their munitions, we were directed to different starting positions. The race would start by an all out sprint to waiting helicopters. When the whole unit had climbed into the helicopter, it flew away to the next checkpoint.
The alarm sounded for the race to begin and everyone began to run. My team, of course being the most awake of all the teams, made it to our helicopter before any of the other teams. Our unit commander gave the pilot directions while the rest of us kicked back for some much needed sleep.
June 21, 1940
After we arrived at the checkpoint yesterday, we found out that we were the first team to get there. The people there gave us the choice of taking another gun or some night vision binoculars. The unit quickly conversed before splitting the team down the center. Half of us would take another weapon, while the other half would take the night vision binoculars.
I was chosen to take an extra weapon by the unit and was happy for this. I’d rather have another weapon than some night optics that I can only use half of the race time.
When I walked over to the table where the guns were laid out, I saw an M1 Garand and instantly fell in love. I grabbed it as well as the ammunition it would need to fire and jogged back over to where my team stood.
At this point in the race, we were supposed to find some sort of land transportation to get us to where we would sleep for that night. We split up into groups of two and began methodically searching the compound. After about twenty minutes of this, a jeep was found. We tried to get all of us inside, but it wasn’t big enough. After realizing this, a few of us decided that we would walk while the others drove around outside the compound. But when the commander turned the key in the ignition, nothing happened. We checked everything about the car and quickly realized that it was out of fuel. So reluctantly, everyone clambered out and we began searching again.
Not too long later, my partner and I found a Humvee, full of fuel, and called everyone over to it. By this time, we could see a few of the other helicopters carrying the other teams flying toward us. Once we saw this, the whole unit began to work faster. Everyone piled into the Humvee and we sped off.
The first helicopter had landed and the unit members were spilling out. They looked over to where we were speeding away and fired a few quick shots at our tires. None of them found their mark, but it sure scared us.
After about an hour of uneventful driving, we finally made it to the GPS coordinates where the last checkpoint of the day should be. We looked around and didn’t see anything. The forest was unusually quiet, but we thought that the loud rumbling of the Humvee’s engine had scared all the animals away so we didn’t think much of it.
We all opened the doors and crawled out, looking for anything that resembled a checkpoint. My commander checked the GPS coordinates again and confirmed that we were in the correct spot. All of a sudden, Simmunition rounds began to eat up the dirt around our feet. We all took cover behind the Humvee and realized that we had been ambushed. On our leader’s signal, we sneaked out from behind the Humvee and began shooting carefully, so as to conserve ammunition, at our attackers. Most of them were all shot in a matter of minutes and came out with their hands up and we began searching for “survivors.” In a few minutes, we found a building embedded in the side of a hill. Our commander slowly opened the door and we all filed in quietly, looking for any sign of hostility.
A voice came over a hidden PA system telling us that we had arrived at our destination. The voice directed us to our sleeping quarters for the night, which is where I am writing this now.
The other men are going to sleep now and I think I should get my rest too. Goodbye!