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Amazing Race boosts morale

446th AES teams work together to meet objectives

U.S. Airmen with the 446th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron move tires as part of the first ever 446th AES Amazing Race morale event. Photo credit: Master SGT. Minnette Mason

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Reserve citizen airmen from the 446th Airlift ‘Rainier' Wing participated in the first-ever 446th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron Amazing Race morale event June 2.

Airmen from the 446th AES developed a race adapted from the television reality game show The Amazing Race. In the television version, teams race around the world competing in various challenges. Building on that premise, the 446th AES Air Reserve technicians designed a course that required airmen to compete in a wide variety of challenges.

Six teams navigated through seven different obstacles. Some stations were knowledge-based tests such as chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear defense protective measures, while others, such as the tire flip focused on physical strength.

All stations required teammates to creatively work together to meet their objective; winning the coveted squadron badger trophy and bragging rights. The badger is the squadron's informal mascot symbolizing that they never give up, a motto the AES closely follows. The trophy is a perpetual honor, rotating from flight section to flight section depending on the latest victor.

Chief Master Sgt. Saudi McVea, 446th AES chief enlisted ART, played an integral role in organizing the morale event.

"I wanted to put together something outside of our normal activities that would be fun, challenging and enhance morale," said McVea.

McVea was also the referee of an obstacle for marching jodies, where teams had to march to specific cadences while singing.

Teams were made up by flight sections and had the opportunity to prepare costumes for the competition. Some teams were dressed in Hawaiian-style apparel, others patriotic colors, and even one team was known as "Colonel's Pack O' Knights" keenly named after the 446th AES Commander Col. Cheryl Knight.

"This has been such an amazing event. These airmen work so hard, so I'm really glad we got together to focus on building morale and having fun," said Knight. "I'm really proud of the hard work and accomplishments of everyone here."

The team that made it through all seven events the fastest and had the least amount of penalties won the coveted badger trophy.

In a close race, the AES Operations Flight nick-named the "Fly'n Hawaiians" came in first place.

The entire squadron cheered on the last team to complete the obstacle course.

When McVea asked the squadron if they should do another Amazing Race morale event everyone responded with a resounding "Yes!" and one member shouted, "How about next UTA!"

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