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Fort Sill Instructors Honored

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FORT SILL Okla_ It was a special day Tuesday for education at Fort Sill as the post's Instructors of the Year were honored.

This year's ceremony recognized teachers from the traditional four categories, including commissioned officer, warrant officer, non-commissioned officer, and Department of Army civilian. This year, however, two more instructors from the marines were also honored.

Ten instructors took the stage Tuesday in front of their families, fellow teachers and Fort Sill brass as official representatives of the Fires Center of Excellence. Initially, the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command recognized just one instructor per post for their dedication and talent. Tuesday though, all ten were honored individually as best of the best in Fort Sill education.

"This is just a snapshot of all the great instructors that we have within our organization,"

The Fires Instructor Creed reads, "I will teach my class as if it is the most important class I'll ever teach." Those are words that these instructors live by each and every day. Now, their mark is being solidified in Fort Sill's history.

"I competed against a lot of great instructors from the marine artillery," Marines Gunnery Curriculum Developer of the Year Staff Sergeant Elliott Weidel said. "I just feel honored to be selected as the top of the artillery attachment."

Over the course of the year, each category receives nominees that put together a resume of sorts in order to showcase the ways that they are able to represent the Fires Center nationally. This year, organizers say the competition was fierce.

"We're thrilled to death," Director of Professional Development Dr. Casey Blaine said. "These guys are just superb. They represent not only soldier training, but officer PME and NCO PME. So, we're really proud of them and what they can do in the classroom to train the world's best soldiers."

Even civilians were honored for their teaching talents. Veteran Patricia Nuehring said her passion lies within the success of her students.

"As an educator, you want to impart knowledge on your students and you want to see successes from them," Nuehring said. "So, having that educator relationship with them and developing them is probably my greatest strength."

One by one, each instructor received commendation medals on stage. Despite the honor, SSGT Weidel said he wants to continue the tradition of the armed services.

"Being able to pass that knowledge down from my generation to younger generations so they can continue in the Marine Corps is probably the biggest thing I could achieve to this date," Weidel said.

All of Tuesday's winners will move on in competition by representing Fort Sill and the Fires Center of Excellence next spring. They'll compete against other instructors from posts all over the nation in national instructor of the year events at Fort Eustis, Virginia.



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