US Army, May 27, 2014 - FORT CAMPBELL, Ky by Maj Daniel Hill, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) - A formation of Black Hawk helicopters and a memorial ceremony to the fallen were some of the highlights of the 2014 Week of Night Stalker Activities (WONSA).
WONSA is a unique opportunity for Soldier, families, civilians and friends of the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) to reunite and enjoy fellowship with those who share a common bond.
Hundreds of Soldiers, distinguished guest, civilians and families of the fallen gathered for a memorial service dedicated to the Night Stalkers who have died during training or combat, most during the last decade in support of sustained combat operations around the world.
“We gather here each year to honor sacrifice,” said Col. John Evans, Jr., commander, 160th SOAR (A).
“Today we reflect on the 124 names of our fallen, let us acknowledge the legacy of their supreme professionalism and let us embrace their incredible families.”
The annual week-long celebration officially kicked off May 17 with a Memorial Ride by former and current members of the Regiment and their families to Veterans Memorial Park in Hopkinsville, Ky. The ride was followed by a concert and picnic sponsored by the Night Stalker Association (NSA).
This year’s WONSA included the memorial, families of Fallen Night Stalkers roundtable discussion and social, softball and combatives tournaments, the grand opening of the Night Stalker Remembrance Trail, and an awards ceremony and luncheon hosted by the NSA.
The week of events culminated with the Regimental Formal held the evening of May 22, in downtown Nashville and the NSA sponsored Golf Scramble on May 23.
WONSA is a reunion and a time to welcome those families of fallen Night Stalkers and share the memory of their sacrifice. It is an opportunity, for some, to take a short break from the high operational tempo of the unit and participate in activities alongside their Night Stalker brothers and sisters.
“WONSA is a time to bridge the past with the present,” said Sgt. Maj. Mark Brock, regiment operations sergeant major.
“It is a time to reconnect with those you don’t get to see that often, to share memories with the families, and remember those that made the ultimate sacrifice.”