Alaska Army National Guardsmen Sgt. Gerardo Lopez and Spc. Yamil Ramirez, both military policemen from the 49th Missile Defense Battalion, won the competition in the noncommissioned officer and junior enlisted categories.
Among the competition’s events were an Army Physical Fitness Test, day and night land navigation, close-quarter battle drills, casualty evacuation, a written exam, and live-fire weapons ranges. For Lopez, this win marks his second time winning the title of Best Warrior. In 2012, he won in the junior enlisted category when he competed as a specialist.
“It’s a really tough competition,” Nelson said. “Starting from day one, they’re pushed physically in the first event, and it doesn’t let up for the next 72 hours. Anybody who comes out of this competition and wins it, they deserve to hold that title.”
“My favorite part of this competition is getting together with the other Soldiers and competing against them head to head,” Lopez said. “The events aren’t what makes the competition hard, what makes the competition hard are the Soldiers to the left and right of you.”
“We take candidates from every unit and test them to figure out who the best Soldier and noncommissioned officer is in the entire Alaska Army National Guard,” said Sgt. 1st Class Mike Nelson, branch chief of the 207th Multi-Functional Training Regiment, Alaska Army National Guard.