Master Sgt. Williams riding in a CH-47 Chinook
helicopter waiting to jump.
Master Sgt. Roger Williams of the 19th Special
Forces Group (Airborne) has distinguished himself by winning
the 22nd Annual International Parachuting
Competition held on August 14th. The event was
sponsored by the National Guard Bureau and hosted by the
Rhode Island National Guard.
I never expected to win he says, I just did it because I
had never done it in my 35 years [of parachuting].
The parachuting competition is conducted to foster goodwill
among military parachutists from the US Military and foreign
countries. Participants from Italy, Jordan, Ecuador,
Guatemala, El Salvador, Thailand, Canada, United Kingdom and
Romania all competed in this years event.
The object of the competition is to exit from a CH-47
Chinook helicopter at 1,500 feet above ground level while
steering an MC1-1C military parachute to an X placed on
the drop zone. A jumper is timed from when his foot touches
the ground, to the time the jumper touches a disk in the
center of the X.
With the round parachute, it all depends on the pilot, the
spot you get, where you're dropped, and the wind, stated
Master Sgt. Williams performed two jumps with incredible
accuracy. Well like I said, I've been practicing a long
time," he says as he laughs.
His cumulative time of 4 seconds - from the moment he landed
to touching the X -, was better than over 1,260 other
jumpers! Not only is accuracy critical but speed and
agility are essential. Once a jumper lands he must perform
proper procedures, to include a parachute landing fall, and
release of his riser assembly from his harness, all before
he can get to the center of the X.
Master Sgt. Williams jumping out the back of a CH-47
This was Williamss first time competing in the event;
however, he has been parachuting for over 35 years. Master
Sgt. Williams completed the US Army Basic Airborne Course in
1968 and has over 330 Army Static Line parachute jumps and
1780 civilian free fall jumps to his credit without injury.
Brigadier General Stanley Gordon, assistant adjutant general
of the Utah Army National Guard, calling him by his first
name, acknowledged the contributions of a long-time
Guardsman, Roger, hes a great American doing great
For over 38 years, Master Sgt. Williams has represented the
Utah Army National Guard with honor, loyalty, courage,
respect and selflessness. He can now claim to be the worlds
best military parachutist. Congratulations, MSG Williams,
on your achievement.