FORT BLISS, Texas – Sgt. Joshua Rodriguez dresses up in his Texas National Guard uniform every day but at the recent SoldierCon, he dressed up as an Umbrella Corporation mercenary from the Resident Evil video game series.
Rodriguez has served in the guard for six years as a transportation operator and this is the first year he attended SoldierCon – a convention that invited plenty of cosplay, where comic book super hero fans dressed up as their favorite character.
“It has given me a new outlet to explore my cosplay. It’s amazing to see the creativity,” Rodriguez said.
Rodriguez always has been a fan of cosplay, and he says that SoldierCon ties the El Paso community together because people enjoy dressing up.
Many of the attendees put a great deal of time and thought into their costumes. The February 2019 SoldierCon was organized as a way to show appreciation for men and women serving in the military.
Rodriguez isn’t the only soldier who dressed up for this event. U.S. Army Sgt. Major Jason Leeworthy attended the event dressed up as Storm Shadow, a character from G.I. Joe.
“This one is I think pretty successful … with everything right here, the cars are right here, all the people are right here, hopefully it’ll get better as the years go on,” Leeworthy said.
SoldierCon brought in some famous cosplayers like Timmy Byland, Christina Dark and others.
SoldierCon was a family-friendly event filled with vendors selling comic books, action figures, toys and unique art .
“Just being able to like bring to life certain characters for young kids and they just enjoy it like: ‘that guy,’ I love that feeling,” said Timmy Byland, who dressed up as Star-Lord from Guardians of the Galaxy.