Story by SFC Brent Powell on 04/01/2017Fort Huachuca, Arizona After five physically demanding and mentally challenging days filled with early mornings, late nights and numerous events ranging from land navigation, to an oral exam board, the 335th Signal Command's (Theater) 2017 Best Warrior Competition has come to an end.
The competition, which started with eleven competitors from across the United States, quickly narrowed to eight after the first day. Those remaining eight warriors battled it out throughout the remainder of the week for a chance to represent their command in the U.S. Army Reserve Command's Best Warrior Competition in June.
When the final scores were tallied March 31, two Soldiers stood up to claim the title of "Best Warrior". Army Reserve Spc. Julian Ditona, a multi-channel transmission systems operator/maintainer, assigned to the 98th Expeditionary Signal Battalion, 335th SC (T) took first place among the junior enlisted Soldiers and Army Reserve Staff Sgt. Erick Guzman, information technology staff noncommissioned officer, assigned to the 820th Signal Company, 98th ESB, 335th SC (T), took first place among the noncommissioned officers in the competition.
"I'm very excited right now," said Guzman after being named the winner. "It was the toughest competition I've been a part of, and it was full of good tough competitors. I've learned a lot out here and I'm excited about winning. I'm ready to go to the next level and see what happens."
Ditona also shared Guzman's excitement. "It feels pretty good to win," he said. "I set high standards for myself, and I always strive to meet and exceed those goals, and it paid off in this competition."
With the competition now behind them, the two winners shared some advice for those considering competing in next year's Best Warrior. "A lot of the events in the competition revolve around physical fitness," said Guzman. "The better you are prepared physically, the better you will do overall."
"My mission was to come here and execute in every event, and that's exactly what I did," said Ditona. "As long as other Soldiers can do that, they have a very good chance of coming here and taking home a win."