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Josh T. Miller, San Antonio, Texas
Founder & Lead Instructor
Josh Miller was commissioned into the US Navy upon graduating from Texas A&M University in 2001. At A&M, he was a four year member and eventually commanding officer of the Corps of Cadet’s SEAL Platoon, which trains prospective Naval Special Operations and Warfare candidates. Josh spent his first six months in the Navy completing “Naval Diving and Salvage Training Center” (NDSTC) in Panama City Beach, FL, where he gained the title of Basic Dive Officer (BDO), Salvage Dive Officer, Dive Supervisor and Hyperbaric Chamber Supervisor.
From Dive School, Josh served as Operations, Training and Diving Officer aboard the USS SALVOR (Naval Dive Ship) for 18 months. During this tour he was essential in conducting mixed gas, surface supplied, and surface decompression on oxygen diving operations to defuel oil from a sunken oil tanker in the western Pacific. This tour also took Josh to six Southeast Asian countries to complete foreign internal defense (FID), training our allies in US Navy diving tactics and procedures.
From the SALVOR, Josh attended “Naval School Explosive Ordnance Disposal” (NAVSCOLEOD), where he became an EOD diver and technician. During his last year long tour, Josh commanded an EOD team in Eastern Baghdad, Iraq to respond to improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and other explosive situations. The past five years Josh has continued diving and working with EOD on the civilian side.
Josh is also a founding partner of Improvised Systems, LLC, a company that builds IED training aids, and trains in anti-terrorist tactics to police and military bomb squads and other small tactical units. Improvised Systems recently proudly built a large training package that was used to train the Pentagon’s Security Forces. After recently finding that the he could most impact the non-military world through the fitness techniques he learned as a Special Operations Operator, Josh founded Hellbender’s to allow ANYONE to have a taste of the Navy warrior lifestyle.
Ray Tajerina, San Antonio, Texas
Ray Tijerina is a United States Navy Veteran that served from 1998 to 2007. Upon graduating from boot camp in Great Lakes, Illinois he served three years on the Amphibious Landing Ship, USS Belleau Wood in Sasebo, Japan. While in Japan he completed Second Class swimmer training and graduated from Combat Coxswain School in Yokosuka, Japan. He was placed in charge of the ready life boat crew as well as the Coxswain for the RHIB (Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat) that preformed search and rescue missions. While on the Belleau Wood he preformed operations such as Operations Desert Fox, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Desert Shield in the Persian Gulf as well as numerous ship boarding’s searching for drugs, contraband and Pirates.
After three years on the USS Belleau Wood and USS Essex in Japan. Ray was shipped back stateside to another amphibious vessel, the USS Cleveland. While onboard the USS ClevelandRay was an integral part of the ready life boat crew and the ships Visit, Board, Search and Seizure team. After two cruises to the Persian Gulf in support of Iraqi Freedom Ray was selected to serve as a Recruit Division Commander in Great Lakes, Illinois.
Ray served as a Recruit Division Commander or “drill Instructor” for three years motivating over 1,100 recruits and helping them become sailors in the United States Navy. He trained them in Navy terminology, naval history, and Navy physical training pushing recruits to the limit! After his time teaching young men and women how to get fit as a drill instructor he decided he had found his calling. After nine years in the Navy Ray decided it was time to move on and obtain his degree and is perusing his lifelong dream to teach and coach high school kids in the classroom. As a Hellbender Instructor Ray will show you the passion he has to help people get fit and will push you limits that you thought you could never achieve.
Greg “Zee” Zuniga, San Antonio, Texas
Greg Zuniga enlisted in the United States Marine Corps as an assaultman, to provide anti-bunker and anti-armor fire support, for Infantry Battalions within the 1st Marine Division. While with 3rd Battalion 1st Marines, he was assigned to Maritime Special Purpose Force Platoon, where his combat water survival certification and expert weapon qualifications could be used along side Special Operations Groups.
While in the Marine Corps, he continued his love for physical fitness and organized sports by playing rugby, soccer and football and winning a base championship for 1st Marine Division. He has trained Marines in weapons handling, close quarter battle, physical fitness and combat water survival.
After ten years of service and deployments, he was honorably discharged as a Sergeant. Greg found his enjoyment for multiple sports at an early age, with competitive swimming being one where he held state records. He continues to enjoy cycling, body weight training, kickboxing and numerous obstacle course races. He currently resides in his hometown of San Antonio, Texas, pursuing an education in health and fitness, helping others reach their best personal fitness goals and volunteering for organizations like the Special Olympics.
Eddie Durell, Green Mountain, Colorado
Eddie Durell is a combat veteran of the United States Navy, serving from 2007 until 2012. Eddie initially enlisted under a Special Warfare contract but after disenrollment from the program became a Navy Corpsman. Eddie served with multiple Marine units and recently returned from Afghanistan in October 2011, where he was the lead combat corpsman for his company, medically responsible for over 130 personnel. He is also Fleet Marine Force qualified, and holds top marksman honors with the M4 assault rifle and M9 pistol.
Eddie is a Basic Life Saver instructor as well as Advanced Cardiac Life Support and Pre-hospital Trauma Life Support qualified. He has worked in fast paced, high volume trauma emergency rooms at some of the country’s finest level one trauma treatment centers. He was also a command fitness leader, giving proper instruction of exercises and, diet and nutrition classes to fellow Sailors and Marines.
Eddie was a dynamic lacrosse and football player in high school and college on the east coast. He has completed multiple marathons, with a PR of 2hours and 49minutes, triathlons and a half ironman. He is an avid Crossfit and runner, averaging 40+miles a week. In his free time, Eddie enjoys hiking, running with his dog, snowboarding and rock climbing. Recently separating active duty and moving to Colorado, Eddie is set to finish school and get his Masters as a Physician’s Assistant.
Steven Tamariz, Highlands Ranch, Colorado
Steven Tamariz enlisted in the Marine Corps in February of 2011 as a motor transport operator. He was then stationed at Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, California, under Support Battalion BMP. After being appointed as a squad leader in his platoon, he worked along side and shadowed drill instructors in 1st Recruit Training Battalion. Working in a chaotic environment, he instilled qualities in the recruits to become Marines, while pushing their bodies and minds to the ultimate limit. Steven led his platoon in daily PT and motivated his Marines to push past their injuries to strengthen their bodies and minds. He also has a second-class combat water survival certification (CWS2).
Honorably discharged in late June of 2012, he is now looking to attend school for exercise science and nutrition. Although his career in the Marine Corps was short, he looks forward to passing down his knowledge, and helping others achieve their fitness goals. Steven was born in northern California and raised in Colorado. He enjoys staying in shape, hiking, camping, hunting and dirt biking.
Andrew Rexroad, Arvada, Colorado
Andrew Rexroad is a former Navy Wrester who appreciates exploring the limits of the human body and mind. Andrew’s quest for intensity began in the year 2000 when he decided to attend a 28 day intensity wrestling camp. Since completion of that camp, Andrew has achieved second place on the podium two years in a row qualifying him for the national tournament. As an accomplished national-level wrestler from Kansas, Andrew accepted an appointment to the US Naval Academy and joined the Brigade of Midshipmen as a Navy Wrestler for two years. After his Division-I college wrestling experience, he went on to help coach the Air Force Academy Prep team until moving back to Kansas to join the Wichita State Shocker Wrestling team. After winning the regional championship, Andrew competed at a national level earning Top 16 designation at the NCWA National Tournament. Other wrestling accomplishments include winning the Rocky Mountain State Games and the State Games of America. While at WSU, Andrew earned his Bachelor’s degree in Entrepreneurship.
Andrew now lives in Denver, where he actively enjoys helping people reach their goals, mountain biking, snowboarding, wrestling, kick boxing, jiu jitsu and running marathons / ultramarathons. Aside from training, Andrew works as a Planner for Higher Education and has his sights set on earning his MBA from University of Colorado, Denver.
Kristen Schmid, Thornton, Colorado
Kristen served in the United States Navy from 2004-2010 as a Nuclear Machinist Mate/ Engineering Laboratory Technician. After graduating boot camp in Great Lakes, Illinois she lived in Charleston, SC and Saratoga Spring, NY while attending multiple Navy schools. Kristen was then station onboard an aircraft carrier, the USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) in Norfolk, VA until she got out of the Navy and moved to Colorado.
Kristen has been swimming since she can remember, starting in summer swim clubs when she was little, and then moving on to swim with the Omaha Suburban Aquatic Club. She also participates in numerous 5K’s, the Tough Mudder, and cycling events. She is an avid crossfitter and loves hiking 14′ers, snowboarding, volleyball, mountain biking, and cycling.
Zane Bickler, Denver, Colorado
Zane Bickler is originally from Winter Park, Co. He started Varsity all four years for in Football, Basketball, and Track. Living in such a remote location, Zane was able to do high altitude training, back country hiking and sport training. He is a former receiving tight end for the Hasting College Broncos out of Nebraska, where he studied Sports and Exercise Science. Zane moved back to Colorado to attend a trade school for personal training called National Personal Training Institute (NPTI) where he was able to learn the correct ways of exercise progression, corrective exercise, and tactical training. Exercise progression is how to safely move a client, using the right guidelines to effectively get them to their fitness goals as quickly as possible. Corrective exercise taught him how to access, and correct muscle imbalances and past injuries to have the body able to move efficiently. Tactical training taught him how to train military service members, fire fighters, police, and EMTs to use maximum effort without a warm-up, while not causing injury and staying in peak performance.
Zane is ready to implement the same training for his Hellbenders on the pool deck, and in the water!
Brycen Garrison, Denver, Colorado
Brycen is a current career Lieutenant in the fire service, as well as a Swiftwater Rescue Swimmer and firefighter fitness instructor. He graduated from Colorado State University and became interested in the fire service. He volunteered for two years and then was hired career, just completing his tenth year in the fire service. Due to his passion for fitness once in the fire service, he became a firefighter fitness instructor. This tradition of mastering his skills and teaching new cadets has become a love of his. He became a Swiftwater Rescuer I Swimmer and then achieved the next certification of Swiftwater Rescue Swimmer II. Following that, he became a Swiftwater Rescue Swimmer trainer, certifying other fire departments in Swiftwater rescue. He also holds certifications as: Firefighter II, Fire Instructor I, HazMat Technician, Crossfit Level I, Fire Officer I, EMT-IV and CPR, State Proctor, Ice recue and boat operations. He has competed in individual and team Firefighter Combat Challenges, as well as the annual 9/11 memorial 110 flight stair climb in full personal protective equipment (firefighting gear). Brycen is also an avid PADI certified SCUBA diver.
He as been a lead and assistant instructor for multiple fire service recruit academies. His primary responsibly, being to conduct physical training and skill training drills to help shape the fire service. He also serves as key member of his current fire department’s physical fitness plan. He has developed the current workout programming and continues to train current fire service members. Brycen will show you the passion he has to help people get fit and will push you to limits that you thought you could never achieve.
Paul Gutierrez, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Paul Gutierrez Jr. is a United States Navy Veteran that served from 1987 to 1992. Upon graduating boot camp in San Diego, CA he served five years with Naval Mobil Construction Battalion (NMCB) 3 stationed out of Port Hueneme, CA. During his enlistment, Paul traveled the globe on deployments to Hawaii; Guam; Tinian; Rota, Spain and Tunisia, Africa on Seabee based construction work as a heavy equipment mechanic.
While attatched to NMCB3, Paul graduated in the top three of his class where he attended a Jungle Survival / Warfare Training that was hosted by the United States Army 1st Special Forces 4th Battalion Group based out of Okinawa, Japan. After Paul was honorably discharged from the Navy, he spent a few years in Camarillo, Ca where he was a full time personal trainer.
Paul then moved to Ariozna and entered the law enforcment community where he started as a patrol officer, then later moved up to specialty units, such as the Traffic Divsion as a Motor Officer, then promoted to Street Gang Investigations. After a few years Paul went to Undercover Narcotics buys and sells where he was an undercover detective and later moved to Highway Drug Interdiction, and also was part of the Felony Search Warrant Team. Paul also spent six months as a Instructor at the reserve police academy as a pt instructor training new police recruits. Paul received the Officer of The Year Award, and was also awarded by M.A.D.D. (Mothers Against Drunk Drivers) for 101 DUI arrests in one year. Paul also received a number of other awards including the Arizona Governors Office of Highway Safety Award for 2011.
Paul currently lives in Fort Lauderdale, Fl where he works for a private security company where he is a Explosives K9 Detection Handler working maritime security at the ports as well as other assingments involving explosive and narcotic work.
Paul enjoys training people of all cultures and backgrounds and currently trains on his off time with the Jewish Community with its current and former Israel Defense Forces members that are in the United States. Paul also enjoys scuba diving and is currently working on obtaining his rescue diver certification, as well as crossfit and beach runs, swims and fitness.
As a Hellbender’s Instructor, Paul will show you the passion he has to help you get fit and stay fit, and will push you to the limits that you thought you could never achieve.
Judy, Park City/Sandy, Utah
Chris enlisted in the US Marine Corps in April 2002. He graduated from the Defense Language Institute in 2004 certified as a French translator and was sent to Camp Lejeune, NC. He then deployed to Iraq later that year for a 7 month tour. Once he returned he took a position in the reconnaissance platoon where he became a cadre member training new members for future deployments.
Chris left active duty in 2007 to race bicycles in Belgium with the Cycling Center, and as a reservist for the Armed Forces Cycling Team. In 2008 Chris signed a professional cycling contract with DLP Pro Cycling out of Raleigh, NC. In that year he raced throughout the country including the International Cycling Championship in Philadelphia and the Military Cycling World Championships in Slovenia.
After his stint as a pro cyclist, Chris went back to the military, this time with the Army. He volunteered for Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) school and graduated without being rolled, one of only six in that class to achieve that. Chris then assessed for and was selected to a special operations support unit where he deployed twice to Afghanistan in support of 75th Ranger Regiment.
Chris brings a wealth of fitness knowledge with him. From coaching himself as a pro cyclist to training squads and platoons in the military, he has 20+ years of fitness training experience. Currently Chris is enrolled at the University of Utah majoring in Exercise and Sports Science, and holds the title of CrossFit Level 1 (CF-L1) Trainer.