FORT JACKSON, S.C. — Victory Tower on Fort Jackson is one of many required training events that new Soldiers have to pass in order to graduate basic training. Victory Tower is also the first of many trying tasks that will test Soldiers endurance, will and courage. The privates of Foxtrot Company 1st Battalion, 34th Infantry Regiment faced Victory Tower Aug. 23, 2016, as part of their journey to become the next batch of Soldiers ready to serve in the United States Army.
Foxtrot Company 1-34 Infantry Regiment serves a unique purpose in the Army. The drill sergeants that train the Soldiers there are a mixture of Active Duty and Reserve Soldiers. That fact does not change the training that the Soldiers receive.
The purpose of Victory Tower is twofold. First, it shows the Soldiers that they can overcome their fears and start to live the Army Values, specifically personal courage. Second, it is the first time that the drill sergeants get to see the Soldiers deal with stress and fear and how they react to it. This allows the drill sergeants to see that the Soldiers are committed and willing to continue with their training.
Army Drill Sergeant, Staff Sgt. Desirae Delarosa said, “It’s something that they probably would not have done if they didn’t join the Army.”
Victory Tower is not without its failures. Many Soldiers freeze when they step over the ledge of the 40 foot tower. There are those that are visibly shaken as they start their decent, others that are timid and unsure of their footing, and finally those that fall. For every failure, however, there is a success story that follows. All the Soldiers of Foxtrot Company, through stumbles and falls were able to make it down the wall, succeeding like every Soldier that had come before them.
Soldiers from Foxtrot Company, 1st Battalion 34th Infantry Regiment conduct rappelling operations from Victory Tower on Aug. 23, 2016 at Fort Jackson, S.C. U.S. Army Reserve Photo by Spc. Logan Rath, 211th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment