Hometown Hero: Robert Schmidt hitting new heights as Army Ranger
Craig Press Staff
For this week’s Hometown Hero, the Craig Press is pleased to honor Robert Dylan Schmidt, who became a United States Army ranger on March 8 at Fort Benning, Georgia.
Robert is a 2018 Moffat County High School graduate. Gifted and talented in math, he graduated early, enlisted during his final year, and shipped out for basic training in early June 2018.
Entering the military was Robert’s life-long goal.
“He has wanted to be in the Army since he was a little boy. He followed the footsteps of his great-grandfather, grandfather, and aunt,” said his mother, LeAnn Schmidt, who nominated her hero, her son.
Robert told the newspaper last year that he planned to become an airman and was looking forward to “jumping out of planes for a living.” He added that enlisting in the military would allow him to “experience things before I have to settle down.”
When he enlisted, Robert went in as an 11X with an Option 40 contract, which put him on a fast track to becoming a ranger.
While in Craig, he said veteran and fitness trainer Will Montgomery helped him prepare.
“He has the best future soldier training programs in town,” Schmidt said in an interview in May 2018.
Less than a year after entering the Army, Robert continued his training and was accepted into the Ranger Selection and Assessment program, a battery of physical and psychological tests.
“They are graded not only on their ability to get through the exams, but also on their strength of character and leadership ability,” according to goarmy.com.
Out of 15 members of the platoon who went into the program, Robert was among only two who passed to become rangers.
“Being a ranger is an honor shared by a distinct few,” according to goarmy.com.
As a ranger, he is part of a large-scale special operations force made up of some of the most elite soldiers in the world, who specialize in joint special operations raids and joint forcible entry operations.
Robert is currently in the airborne school to realize his dream of becoming an airman.
“His family and friends in Craig and Meeker are super proud of him, love him lots, and miss him,” LeAnn said.
Merriam-Webster defines a “hero” as a person admired for achievements and noble qualities. Who’s your hometown hero? A local first responder? Your neighbor? A co-worker? A friend? Help the Craig Press honor the unselfish service of our Hometown Heroes each Wednesday by submitting the name of your hero and a short statement explaining why he or she should be honored. Send your story to firstname.lastname@example.org