175 Top Shooters Fire Here Monday

The hopes of the United States for the 1964 Olympic Games in Tokyo in the shooting field will be seen at Fort Benning Monday as more than 175 of America's top international rifle and pistol marksmen take the firing lines for the Third Annual Armed Forces International Shooting Competition.

This competition, which differs from the previous two in that not only military marksmen but also civilian shooters will compete, will run through Sept. 23.

Opening ceremonies will be held Monday at 7:30 a.m. with Lt. Col. Edgar S. Burroughs, Match Headquarters director, and Otto A. Findlay, National Rifle Association representative, as guest speakers.

This match is in actuality an incorporation of two: the Armed Forces International Shooting Competition and the U.S. International Shooting Championships.

The Free Pistol championships will kick off the actual record fire on Monday. Capt. William McMillan of the Marine Corps and SFC William B. Blankenship Jr., are seeded as top contenders in the free pistol and the center and rapid fire pistols.

The pistoleers will be led by Torpedoman First Class Gasper M. DeFino with Capts. Franklin C. Green and Thomas D. Smith anchoring the Air Force team. First Lt. Gaily Liberty will also shoot for the Air Force.

Twenty-nine individual and team championships will be decided during the competition to be hosted by The Infantry Center. The program is sponsored by the U. S. Continental Army Command and sanctioned by the chiefs of staff of the respective Armed Forces and the National Rifle Association.

The program will see five ranges used by the crack competitors who comprise the greater part of America's hopes in future world shoots, said Match Headquarters officials who will direct the shoot.

Last year's competition, the second of its kind, saw the Army cop 26 of 29 "firsts."

Events programmed for the coming Fort Benning meet include International trapshooting, International skeet shooting, 300-meter and 50-meter rifle, 50-meter pistol, 25-meter pistol, rapid fire and center fire pistol, and Running Deer matches.

This International - type firing is conducted over courses of fire and ranges especially designed by the International Shooting Union for world shoots.

The Bayonet, Friday, September 6, 1963

International Marksmen Set Records in Matches

Record breaking scores, a shoot-off and a late surge by Army marksmen is the story thus far in the Third Annual Armed Forces International Shooting Competition being held at the post through Monday.

The first day of record competition, Tuesday (Sept. 10), ? bad one for the hosting Army as the Marine Corps swept the first three places in the individual free pistol championship and the Air Force took the team title.

Marine Corps Warrant Officer William E. Eubank from Quantico, Va., eased ahead of 50 of the nation's top free pistol shooters with 553 out of a possible 600 to bring down the coveted championship.

On the team scene, behind the 545 shooting of Capt. Franklin C. Green and SSgt. Robert C. Meagher, the Air Force blasts a 2,173 score out of a possible 2,400 to lead its next opponent, The Marine Corps, by six points.

The Air Force reigned supreme Thursday (Sept. 12) with a clean sweep of the clay pigeon and free pistol championships.

A2-C Phillip D. Ross from Lackland Air Force Base, Tex., with a 294 score out of a possible 300, not only won the Interservice clay pigeon crown but also took the U.S. International Championship.

In the Interservice clay pigeon team match, Ross along with three others won the championship for the Air Force blue. A2-C E? D. Handy with a ? score; SSgt. Jackie Morris with a 182 total and A3-C Kenneth A. Jones with a ?, added their scores to Ross to total a ? score to take the coveted title won by the Army last year.

Capt. Green of the Air Force, running in the second place position in Thursday's second of the three-day program, fired a 556 score out of a possible 600 to pull ahead of the field of more than 50 of the nation's finest free pistol shooters and win the U.S. International free pistol crown.

The Third annual competition is unique since it is not only hosting one but two championships. Being held along with the Interservice championships are the U.S. International matches, which were held at Fort Benning last year under the name of the "World Tryouts" for the world championship matches fired at Cairo, Egypt.

Each individual match determines a winner in the Interservice realm on the first completion of a course of fire. Under National Rifle Association rules which govern the national shoot, a winner must go over the course of fire three times. The only exception to the foregoing is in the skeet match. An Interservice winner is required to go over the course of fire twice while the national championship requires three runs.

Armed Forces personnel are eligible for wins in both the Interservice and U. S. championships while civilians are eligible in the U.S. portion.

The Army, with the help of a record-breaking score, broke into the winner's circle Saturday and continued winning to share weekend winner's laurels with the Air Force.

The Army's smallbore rifle team, behind the shooting of individual match winner, 1st Lt. Presley Kendall with a 593 score, and 2nd Lt. Eugene Kolstad, blasted a two-point, record-breaking score of 2,254 out of a possible 2,400 to win the individual and team crowns and its first two championships of the two-week competition.

The Air Force stuck to its winning ways in the center fire pistol competition by taking the individual and team match. Capt. Franklin C. Green with a 593 score out a possible 600 — point course, took the Interservice crown for individuals and sparked his team to a 2,338 victory.

A 392 score led the Air Force to its third Interservice crown of the day in the skeet shoot. The championship, which was on by the Army last year with the same score, saw A2-C Thomas J. Heffron with a 98, MSgt. Robert B. Reay with a 99, TSgt. Jack E. Johnson with a 98 and TSSgt David G. Bywater with a 97 total, teamed up for a score bettering their next contenders by six fallen birds.

The Army added two more championships to its lists Sunday, one on the Interservice level and the other on the national plane.

Second Lt. William C. Morris, one of three shotgunners tied Saturday with 99 out of 100 birds, came back in the second day of competition with 98 out of 100 to post the winning score in the Interservice skeet championship.

The national crown won by the Army, U.S. smallbore rifle prone championship, went to MSgt. William E. Krilling with a score of 1,763 out of a possible 1,800 making this the first national level crown won so far by the Army in this two-week competition.

It took a shoot-off to decide the winner in the U.S. center fire pistol championship Monday with Sunday's Interservice taking the U.S. laurels in the skeet shoot.

In the center fire match, Capt. Green went into the day's round of fire with a 1,183 score, two points ahead of his next competitor, SFC Ralph O. Thompson of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Training Unit. When the competition had finished Thompson had picked up the necessary two points to throw the match into a deadlock 1,771 each.

A shoot-off of 300 points was fired to determine the winner, with Capt. Green coming up the victor with an almost perfect 299 score as opposed to Thompson's 297 total.

A perfect score of 100 birds on the skeet range enabled Army Lt. Morris to take uncontested first place in the U.S. skeet championship.

Sgt. D. I. Boyd of the Marines worked his way to the coveted 50-meter smallbore rifle three-position aggregate championship by firing winning scores in the kneeling and standing 50-meter shoots to easily walk away with Tuesdays individual laurels. His score of 1,146 out of a possible 1,200 score was 14 points ahead of his next contender.

Boyd won the kneeling match with 385 points out of possible 400 and the standing competition with a 371 score.

Team wise, the Army took the aggregate match with 4,495 points out of a possible 1,800, led by their winning prone team score of 1,563 out of a possible 1,600.

The Bayonet, Friday, September 20, 2013


The 3rd Annual U.S. International Rifle, Pistol, and Shotgun Championships were fired at Ft. Benning, Ga., from Sept. 9 through 23. This year these NRA Championships were combined with the Armed Forces International Championships, the former being decided by 3 full International courses (usually one course fired each day) and the latter by the first stage of the total U.S. Championship Aggregate for the type of fire concerned.

A total of 9 separate championships were decided. Awards were made to all the champions, to the runners-up, and to third, fourth, and fifth places. Because the stages (each day's firing) consist of a complete International match course of 60 to 120 shots, prizes were also awarded to daily winners. A daily prize winner could receive only one such award, and when a daily winner repeated the prize was passed down to the next eligible competitor.

It was originally planned that these U.S. International Championships for Running Deer would be the final tryouts for the U.S. Team going to the ISU World Moving Target Championships at Caracas, Venezuela, but the tryouts were canceled after word reached the United States that the ISU World Championships had been canceled.

Postal matches fired

Three International Postal Matches were also on the firing schedule of the U.S. Championships. These were the Slow-Fire 50-Meter Pistol Match and the 3-Position Smallbore Rifle 50-Meter Match, both organized by the NRA, and the 300-Meter Free-Rifle Match organized by the Swiss Shooting Federation. As in all such postal matches, only the U.S. Team fires in the United States; other teams fire throughout the year in their own countries. Scores and targets are sent to the organizing nation and a bulletin is issued shortly after the following Jan. 1. Winners are not known until then. Each U.S. team was selected on the basis of total scores fired by shooters during the first 2 days' shooting in the U.S. International Championships, and the team score consisted of the scores of the selected shooters on the third day.

The 3 record stages of each U.S. Championship were preceded by a day of practice shooting.

Center-Fire Pistol - Weather conditions, though not perfect, had little if any effect on scores.

Green also won this National Championship after besting SFC Ralph O. Thompson, USA, in a shoot-off to break a tie, both had scores of 1771. In the 30-shot rapid-fire stage for the match used to break the tie, Green fired a score of 299 and Thompson 297.

Lt. Gail N. Liberty, USAF, winner of the National Women's Pistol Championship at Camp Perry, repeated in this match and won the Women's Championship with a score of 1696. Both Miss Liberty and Mrs. Schlernitzauer established a new record for this course with a score of 568, Miss Liberty firing this score on the first and second days of the tournament and Mrs. Schlernitzauer firing her 568 on the first day. Miss Liberty and Mrs. Schlernitzauer were the U.S. women representatives for pistol competition at the Cairo World Championships.

Excerpt from the American Rifleman, Vol. 111, No. 11, November 1963

Magazine Photo

Members of the U.S. International Slow-Fire 50-Meter Pistol Postal Team were (l. to r., standing) Col. George H. Van Deusen, USAF, Team Captain; SFC Ralph O. Thompson, USA; S/Sgt. Robert C. Meagher, USAF; WO William E. Eubank, USMC; Sgt. Larry L. Hausman, USMC; Capt. William W. McMillan, Jr., USMC, alternate; Capt. Paul J. Shank, USMC, alternate; Maj. Harold F. Smith, Jr., USA, Team Coach; (kneeling) SFC William B. Blankenship, Jr., USA; S/Sgt. Alvin R. Merx, USAF; PO2 Donald L. Hamilton, USN; Capt. Franklin C. Green, USAF; Sgt. Arnorld N. Vitarbo, USMC; SFC R. L. Cochran, USA.

This postal is annually sponsored by the NRA and this year 15 other nations are competing. U.S. Team members were picked from high scores posted in the first 2-day aggregate. The course of fire is 60 shots at 50 meters in 3 hours with the cal. .22 free-pistol for the 10 firing members.

American Rifleman, Vol. 111, No. 11, November 1963

Rank Name Service Branch/Agency Total
1 Franklin C. Green U.S. Air Force 1654
2 Wm B. Blankenship, Jr. U.S. Army 1646
3 William E. Eubank U.S. Marine Corps 1640
4 Ralph O. Thompson U.S. Army 1640
5 Arnold N. Vitarbo U.S. Marine Corps 1639

(Source: American Rifleman, Vol. 111, No. 11, November 1963)

Center-Fire Pistol
Rank Name Service Branch/Agency Total
1 Franklin C. Green U.S. Air Force 1771
2 Ralph O. Thompson U.S. Army 1771
3 Arnold N. Vitarbo U.S. Marine Corps 1760
4 Wm W. McMillan, Jr. U.S. Marine Corps 1759
5 Alvin R. Merx U.S. Air Force 1758

(Source: American Rifleman, Vol. 111, No. 11, November 1963)

Rapid-Fire Pistol
Rank Name Service Branch/Agency Total
1 James H. McNally U.S. Army 1753
2 Edwin L. Teague U.S. Air Force 1751
3 James A. Getchell U.S. Marine Corps 1743
4 Cecil L. Wallis U.S. Army 1740
5 Wm B. Blankenship, Jr. U.S. Army 1735

(Source: American Rifleman, Vol. 111, No. 11, November 1963)

U.S. International
Slow-Fire 50-Meter Pistol Postal Team
Rank Country Total
1 Switzerland 5455
2 United States 5450
3 Finland 5377
4 West Germany 5347
5 Sweden 5325
6 Great Britian 5309
7 Italy 5285
8 France 5255
9 Norway 5155
10 Austria 5053
11 Denmark 5049
12 Canada 5029
13 South Africa 4991
14 Israel 4640
15 Southern Rhodesia 4136

(Source: American Rifleman, Vol. 112, No. 2, November 1964)

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