BASTROP, Texas. – “And the Winner is...,” the announcer paused.
Most remember saying, “when I grow up,” as a kid, but few will
remember what career they loved at the time and fewer reach their
childhood dream; U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Steven Hein is one of the
Steven Hein, a police officer with the Richardson Police
Department in Richardson, Texas, inspects his vehicle prior to a
patrol on Jan. 28, 2016 ... and shortly before competing at the 2016
Best Warrior Competition at Camp Swift, Texas. ((Texas Air National Guard photo by USAF
Tech. Sgt. Vanessa Ree)
“I was like 8 or 9-years old and my dad was walking
around with a video camera, videotaping all us kids and
interviewing us. I was in the backyard shooting a BB gun of
all things. I was shooting tin cans when he asked me, 'what
do you want to be when you grow up?' I said, ‘well I want to
be on SWAT. I want to be a cop and be on SWAT,” said Hein.
Hein followed through with his dream and became a police
officer with the Richardson Police Department in Richardson,
Texas. He also became a training noncommissioned officer
assigned to the 136th Security Forces Squadron, Texas Air
National Guard, at Naval Air Station Fort Worth Joint
Reserve Base, Texas.
He enjoys setting goals and
overcoming challenges. His latest challenge is a second
attempt at taking home first place in the Texas Military
Department's Best Warrior Competition.
impressive to make it twice in a row because he competed
against all the guys in his wing and beat them out a second
time to get here.” said U.S. Army Master Sgt. Shane Ruppel,
Texas Army National Guard, the BWC event noncommissioned
officer in charge.
The BWC is an annual event that tests the aptitude of elite Texas
Air and Army National Guardsmen during three days of physically and
mentally grueling events. The events are meant to test the member's
endurance, marksmanship, land navigation skills and professionalism.
This year, guard members were also joined by Army reservist and
Chilean military members.
“I figured I'd give it another
try,” said Hein. “It was a good experience; it's fun. You get to
meet some new people, experience new things and learn some new
His road to police work began in 2007, when he joined
the U.S. Air Force as a security forces member. His first and only
active duty assignment was with the 90th Security Forces Squadron,
F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyoming, where he was a gate guard and
patrolman for two years before becoming a member of the elite
Tactical Response Force.
U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Steven Hein, a competitor from the
136th Security Forces Squadron, conducts a tire flip as part of the
mystery event portion of the Best Warrior Competition at Camp Swift,
Texas on Feb. 6, 2016. The BWC test the aptitude of elite Texas Air
and Army National Guardsmen in events relevant to today's operating
environment. (Texas Air National Guard photo by USAF Tech. Sgt.
“We were dual mission,” said Hein. “We had nuclear
recapture and recovery and we were also the base EST team,
or SWAT team.”
The training he received during his
time with the Tactical Response Force directly contributed
to his success in both his civilian and military law
enforcement careers said Hein. It also prepared him for many
of the tasks he faced during his first run at BWC. He hopes
that the training comes back just as naturally during his
second trip here.
little boy grew up and became a cop, times two. He works
long hours to help protect the city of Richardson and
trained hard to represent his squadron at the BWC for a
second time and through all that he remains humble.
“I'm not the best, I'm not the strongest, I'm not the
fastest and I'm definitely not the smartest, but I do give
100 percent to everything I do,” said Hein. “I get that from
my dad, he always had the no quit mentality.”
2016 BWC is over. The competitors stood before a board,
wrote an essay, completed a land navigation course in
below-freezing temperatures, rucked eight miles, assembled,
disassembled and fired a variety of weapons, ran an obstacle
course and faced the mystery event.
continued, “The top NCO for the Texas Air National Guard,
from the 136th Security Forces Squadron is Staff Sergeant
“I didn't think I did that well, but I
gave it all I've got,” concluded Hein.
By U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Vanessa Ree
Texas Air National
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