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NEWS | Nov. 23, 2021

Soldiers, civilians and families of 83rd ARRTC deliver fun, food at 3rd annual holiday ruck march

By Eric Pilgrim Fort Knox

Several members of 83rd U.S. Army Reserve Readiness Training Center took to Natcher Physical Fitness Center’s one-mile track at Fort Knox, Kentucky, on Nov. 19 to continue what has become a tradition for them.

For the third year in a row, 83rd ran and ruck marched a couple thousand pounds of canned and boxed food for three miles around the track to celebrate giving back to the surrounding community in time for the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.

In keeping with the tradition, their commander, Col. Joseph Thomas Jr., issued a challenge — carry more weight than him, or cross the finish line ahead of him, and get a three-day pass. Thomas told the crowd before the march that he was packing probably about 65-plus pounds of weight.

Two claimed the honors of heaviest rucks after the unit’s weigh-in at Skidgel Hall later: Master Sgt. Isaac Haugen, senior instructor, at 122 pounds; and Sgt. 1st Class Yadira Garcia Ocasio, senior instructor, at 82.8 pounds. Virtually everyone crossed the finish line ahead of Thomas.

The total weight carried by the 83rd Soldiers, participating civilian employees and families was 2,102.5 pounds. After the ruck march, the food was donated to Feeding America.