JOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST, N.J (APR 4, 2011). - Eighteen Soldiers from the Army Reserve descended upon the Maj. John P. Pryor Armed Forces Reserve Center at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., to kick off the third annual 99th Regional Support Command Best Warrior Competition.

This year's competition is being overseen by Sgt. Maj. Jesus DeJesus, interim sergeant major for the 99th RSC.

The Soldiers who have been selected to undergo the grueling 5- day competition are -

Sgt 1st Class David Urquia, 2nd Battalion, Army Reserve Careers Division
Staff Sgt. Kyle A. Vanderlaan, Army Reserve Careers Division
Staff Sgt. Walter Rivera, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 99th RSC
Staff Sgt. Kendall V. Conner, 2nd Battalion, Army Reserve Careers Division
Sgt. David Adams, 78th Army Band
Sgt. Edu Bennett, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 99th RSC
Sgt. Matthew J. Bledsoe, Det. 6, 3100 Signal
Sgt. Stephen M. Berry, 301st Military Intelligence Battalion
Sgt. Jerry Estrellado, 368th Military Intelligence Battalion
Spc. Brian A. McIlvaine, 78th Army Band
Spc. Andrew Hahn, 78th Army Band
Spc. Thomas D. Tripiciano, 198th Army Band
Spc. Katherine Elizabeth Bolcar, 319th Army Band
Spc. Brett Lovelace, B Co., 323rd Military Intelligence Battalion
Spc. Gerard Cortese, 319th Army Band
Spc. Mitchel P. Dolan, 378th Military Intelligence Battalion
Spc. Chad Kelley, 301st Military Intelligence Battalion
Spc. Ly Tavada, 368th Military Intelligence Battalion

"It's commendable ... that we have Soldiers in the Army Reserve who are dedicated to being a Soldier 24/7 throughout their lives when they are in uniform and then they are in their civilian capacity, they are willing to put forth the effort to come in and go through a competition like this which is very grueling and competitive," said 1st Sgt. Dave Gallman.

Gallman is the senior advisor and is also the first sergeant for all the competitors and support staff for this year's competition

"Even though the competition is open to Active Guard Reserve most of the competitors are Troop Program Unit, who are drilling Reserve Soldiers," Gallman added.

"This is where the rubber meets the road," said DeJesus.

The events in which the Soldiers will participate includes Army Physical Fitness Test, an M16A2 Weapon Qualification, a Move and Shoot Event, a Day and Night Land Navigation, MOUT exercises that evaluate the Soldiers in a number of critical Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills, a Road March, an M16A2 and M9 disassemble timed test and, after all that, an official board appearance.

The winner of this competition will represent the RSC at the Army Reserve BWC from June 19-24,2011 at Fort McCoy, Wis.

The 99th Regional Support Command acts as a "virtual installation" that provides world-class Base Operations support to over 50,000 Army Reserve Soldiers, 400 units and 300 facilities for the entire Northeast Region from Maine to Virginia for the Army Reserve in order to give our Warrior-Citizens and their Families the finest care, support, services and training they deserve.