Staff Sgt. Celia Riffey, a military police soldier with the 252nd Military Police Company and a native of Sevierville, became the first female in Tennessee history to ever place first at the Tennessee National Guard’s annual Adjutant General Rifle Match, the Tennessee Department of Military announced Thursday in a press release.
The match was held at Tullahoma’s Volunteer Training Site from May 20th-22nd. The three-day competition consisted of multiple graded events measuring the speed and accuracy of each marksman, according to the Department of Military.
On day three, as the competition concluded, scores were tallied, and Riffey was declared the overall top marksman. The match focused on rifle proficiency, while the pistol competition will take place in August.
“I didn’t expect to win, but I’m happy with how it turned out,” Staff Sgt. Celia Riffey expressed in a statement. “I’m pleased with how I performed this weekend. Any day you get to throw lead down range is a good day in the Tennessee National Guard.”
Riffey’s team, which included three additional members of the 252nd, came in second place in the overall team competition, according to the press release. A team from the 1-171st Aviation Regiment came in first place, and a team from the Tennessee Air National Guard’s 118th Wing took third.
Riffey, who has been serving in the Guard for over 11 years, is “excited to share gained knowledge on marksmanship with her fellow soldiers,” according to the Department of Military.
“I do a lot of hunting and I’m comfortable with a rifle, but I was able to learn a lot this weekend,” Riffey further expressed in a statement. “I like to teach, and I want my unit members to be as proficient as possible, so I’m looking forward to continue to work with them so we can be a better unit.”
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Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network.