Military Marksmanship Association
Formerly AMUA - Army Marksmanship Unit Association

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Photo of Raymond Behnay

Raymond Behnay

Master Sergeant Raymond Behnay, 77, expired April 7, 2001, in Columbus, Georgia.

Master Sergeant Raymond Behnay served in World War II with the 4th Armored Division in Europe. He took part in five major battle campaigns, including the Battle of the Bulge and was awarded the Purple Heart Medal for wounds received from hostile fire.

His other military tours include positions in Ordnance Technical Intelligence, Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Calibration and Ballistics, Guidance Survey Team, and assignments with the 82nd Airborne Division and US Army Southern Command.

Raymond Behnay served over 20 years with the US Army Marksmanship Unit as a Master Gunsmith and Shop Foreman. His service to the USAMU began as a military gunsmith in 1958. MSG Behnay retired from the Army in 1964 and was hired as a civil service employee. He served as the international rifle gunsmith and USAMU shop foreman for an additional 14 years.

During his tenure in the USAMU Custom Firearms Shop, he taught other military and civilian gunsmiths how to build, customize, and maintain high quality rifles required by world class shooters. Mr. Behnay also served as the principal international rifle gunsmith for USAMU teams at the National Matches and as the gunsmith for United States teams competing in the Pan American Games, the World Championships, and the Olympic Games.

Behnay customized the rifles used by Gary Anderson, Lones Wigger, Lanny Bassham, Margaret Thompson, and countless other world class shooters.

All of his accomplishments were done to aid and help the shooter achieve their goals. The success of the shooter, the smile on their face, and a winning score was his reward.

In 1993, Behnay was inducted into the USAMU Support Hall of Fame.

MSG Behnay's Gunsmith Accomplishments

  • Designed rifle stocks with a "canted" butt allowing the shooter to cant the rifle while the sights remained 90 degrees to target.

  • Designed first open circular palm rest --  jestingly coined as a "toilet seat" palm rest by international rifle shooters.

  • Designed first four way butt plate with custom fitted hook.

  • Designed first adjustable fore end weight.

  • Made the first adjustable cheekpiece, allowing the shooter to hold their head in same position while aiming with iron or telescopic sights.

  • Converted the Anschutz smallbore rifle to left hand operation for left handed shooters.

  • Designed and fabricated custom made smallbore and center fire "standard rifle" stocks complying with international shooting union specifications for USAMU international rifle shooters.

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