Airman 1st Class Michael Martin, 36thMedical Group Aerospace Medical Technician, completes the tire obstacle course in the hopes of becoming Andersen Air Force Base’s Annual Fear Factor champion Sept. 25 at Arc Light Memorial Park. The competition includes a preliminary qualifying round and three subsequent elimination rounds with a grand prize of round-trip airfare to Japan. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Whitney Amstutz)
Is fear a factor?

by Airman Whitney Amstutz
36th Wing Public Affairs

9/28/2010 - ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam -  -- Servicemembers, dependents and civilians braved the wind and torrential rain Sept. 25 at Arc Light Memorial Park to determine one thing: is fear really a factor?

NBC's Fear Factor is known for its outrageous stunts and truly vile challenges. Thanks to the creative minds at the 36th Services Squadron, Andersen has its own version of Fear Factor where the stunts are just as shocking.

More than 20 competitors participated in Andersen's Annual Fear Factor challenge for a grand prize of round--rip airfare to Japan. Following an initial qualifying round, which narrowed the field to eight, contestants completed a series of challenges testing the limits of both mind and body.

"You can't have a Fear Factor event without some gore and gagging," said Michele Jacobs, director of the HotSpot. "We obviously can't put anyone's life in danger, like jumping out of a helicopter or driving a car off a cliff, so it's always challenging trying to come up with the physical and mental stunts."

There was no rest for the weary as the eight remaining competitors were quickly ushered on to the next stunts which consisted of a 25-foot rock climbing wall, a low-crawl pit and tire obstacle course. The challenge tested the competitor's speed and hand-eye coordination. Once all participants completed the course, the six fastest individuals moved on to round three.

The semi-final round tested the principal of mind over matter. The remaining six competitors, all vying for a spot in the final, were faced with perhaps the most difficult challenge yet: consuming a partially developed bird embryo.

"The eating stunt is surprisingly easy to create," Jacobs said. "On Guam there are many delicacies that most of us would not think of eating."

After overcoming their fears and gag reflexes, the finalists awaited the unveiling of the final event.

"We boiled a large amount of pig and chicken parts to make the final challenge," Jacobs said. "Everything had to be completely sanitary to ensure that no one got sick, but we had to keep that grotesque element as well."

The final three competitors thrust their heads into large buckets of water filled with various animal parts in an attempt to fish out five chicken feet and be named Andersen's Fear Factor champion.

Jacob Greathouse, a Team Andersen dependent, dominated the competition and finished several seconds ahead of the field proving that for him, fear is not a factor. Having won the grand prize, Greathouse is looking forward to taking a vacation.

"I wanted to compete just to see how I would do," Greathouse said. "At the time I signed up I don't recall if there was any listing of what the prizes would be, but I am very excited about the prize. I haven't been able to visit Japan yet. I am very happy with it."