MC2 (SW) Kevin V. Cunningham
Army Sgt. Roberto A. Saenz, a preventive medicine specialist stationed at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, won the U.S. Army Medical Command Best Warrior Competition July 23-26 at Camp Bullis, Texas.
The week-long competition between hand-selected Soldiers from throughout the U.S. Army Medical Command included a series of challenges to test the physical and mental stamina and warrior task knowledge of each competitor to select the “best of the best” to represent MEDCOM in the Army-wide Best Warrior Competition later this year. The competition consisted of the Army Physical Fitness Test, weapons qualification, warrior tasks, mystery events, day and night land navigation, a written exam with an essay, 12-mile road march and an oral board.
“I owe my success to the great teamwork and mentorship the Army has provided me,” said Saenz, a native of Spring Branch, Texas. “It’s an accomplishment to be proud of and motivates me to prepare for the next level.”
Army Sgt. Nicholas Heister, a supervisor and mentor of Saenz, said it was evident from Saenz’s first day at the command that he wanted to achieve high goals and was willing to make the sacrifice that they would entail.
“We’ve worked together since 2015 and ever since then he’s showed a tremendous amount of resiliency and ability to use good experiences and bounce back from bad ones,” said Heister. “It’s rewarding to mentor someone with so much motivation and determination.”
Saenz commented on the difficulty of the MEDCOM competition, saying the most important value to keep in mind while competing was personal motivation.
“Staying focused and motivated when you feel like giving up is the key to keeping your mind sharp out there on the course,” said Saenz.
“Having him on our team here at Walter Reed has been a real positive impact,” said Army Capt. Donny Skinner, chief of Environmental Health at WRNMMC. “He serves his fellow Soldiers as a mentor who constantly leads by example. Not only does he excel in his job specialty, but he goes above and beyond to excel in all aspects of what it means to be a Soldier.”
Saenz now prepares to represent the U.S. Army Medical Command at the Army’s Best Warrior Competition in October.