JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-CAMP BULLIS, Texas —
After four days in the grueling Texas heat and pushing through events designed to task the participants both physically and mentally, the Regional Health Command-Central named Sgt. Samantha Delgado and Sgt. Kevin Ramirez as the Region’s Best Medics at a ceremony at Joint Base San Antonio-Camp Bullis July 26.
Both Soldiers are from Brooke Army Medical Center and will go on to compete at the U.S. Army Medical Command Best Medic Competition in the fall for a chance to compete at the Army level.
Brig. Gen. George “Ned” Appenzeller, RHC-C commanding general, congratulated all the competitors for their perseverance through all the events, and requested two things from them after they go back to their commands.
“I have two things I am going to ask of you,” the general said. “One: save lives. You are the reason we have such a low mortality rate for our deployed Soldiers. It’s not the doctors or nurses – it’s the initial care they receive from the medics deployed with their units. It’s because of each of you. Number two: pay it forward. Train those Soldiers who are coming up behind you to take your place.”
Each of the winners received a trophy and an Army Commendation Medal from both Appenzeller and Command Sgt. Maj. Joseph L. Cecil, RHC-C command sergeant major.
Cecil also thanked the participants for their tenacity and resilience throughout the last 96 hours.
“Be proud of yourself,” he said. “This was a difficult competition. It’s meant to be that way. As you move up to the MEDCOM and Army competitions, it will be even harder.”
Of the eight competing teams, only five made it to the finish line: Brooke Army Medical Center, Irwin Army Community Hospital, Evans Army Community Hospital, Raymond W. Bliss Army Health Center and Munson Army Health Clinic.
“The competition was extremely hard,” said Delgado, a BAMC radiology technician. “They packed so much into every day, and it physically exhausting and mentally draining.”
“It was definitely challenging. They packed so much into it, I don’t know how we got through it,” said Ramirez, a medical laboratory specialist. “There were no sure winners throughout the entire course, and we were fighting for the lead the entire time, even after this morning no one knew who won. It was definitely a competition.”
Some of the events the Soldiers were required to do were the Air Assault course, the obstacle course, the Army and the Marine Corps World War II physical fitness tests, combatives and more, followed by a 12-mile road march that started before dawn.
Both Ramirez and Delgado were proud of their accomplishments and to represent BAMC. When asked what they thought was the most difficult event, they both agreed that the Land Navigation event was the most difficult due to the large area it covered and the full rucksack they had to carry.
“We came out way off on one of our points,” Delgado said, “We had an hour to make it to the finish line between three or four miles away, and we wound up running the entire way back so we could finish on time,” Delgado added.
“I enjoyed it,” Ramirez said. “It was hard a lot of times, but winning it makes all of it worth it. I’m very proud and thankful I could be a part of it.”