Posts Categorized: War Heroes

Rep. Trent Kelly Honors Puerto Rican War Hero

Rep. Trent Kelly (R-MS) recently spoke in honor of the memory of Army Staff Sergeant Milton Rivera-Vargas, who lost his life on December 8, 2005, during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Rivera-Vargas was a member of the 1st Battalion, 296th Infantry Regiment, Puerto Rico Army National Guard, Sabana Grande, Puerto Rico. A memorial website has messages for the family of… Read more »

Hannah Kim and Puerto Rico’s Korean War Vets

July 27th was National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day in the United States, and no one took this day more seriously than Hannah Y. Kim. Kim, who worked as Chief of Staff and Communications Director for former Rep. Charles B. Rangel (D-NY), a Korean War veteran. Ms. Kim has spent many years advocating for Korean… Read more »

US Department of Defense Recognizes Puerto Rican Military Service

The Department of Defense recently spotlighted Puerto Rico’s participation in the U.S. Military with an article bringing out the details of the territory’s service since World War I. “I’m super-proud of my heritage,” the article quotes retired Marine Corps 1st Sgt. Ildelfonso “Pancho” Colon Jr. as saying. “Like any soldier from Texas who loves his Texas… Read more »

Borinqueneers to be Honored at Capitol

After years of grassroots efforts, the Congressional Gold Medal will be awarded to the U.S. Army’s 65th Infantry Regiment, the Borinqueneers, Wednesday, April 13th, 2016, at 3:00 p.m. in Emancipation Hall in the U.S. Capitol building. The Borinqueneers sprang from the first volunteer regiment established in Puerto Rico in 1899. They were officially established in… Read more »

View from a Veteran for the June 24 Congressional Hearing on Status

This is a guest post by Dennis O. Freytes Honorable Members of the US House Natural Resources Sub-Committee and other American patriots: My name is Colonel Dennis Freytes. I’m a statutory born U.S. Citizen (with an un-permanent US Citizenship); a patriotic American Veteran, U.S. Army Retired- former Commander of Infantry, Special Forces, Airborne and other… Read more »

Congressional Medal for Borinqueneers One Step Closer

The U.S. Mint has presented design options for the Congressional Medal for the Borinqueneers to the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC), which chose the design above. The design will now go on to the Fine Arts Commission, and to military historians who will confirm the accuracy of the uniforms, according to Samuel Rodríguez, a member… Read more »

Dolores Mercedes Piñero: WWI Doctor and Pioneer

Dolores Mercedes Piñero was one of the first female doctors in Puerto Rico and the first Puerto Rican woman to serve as a doctor under contract with the U. S. Army. Born in San Juan in 1892, when Puerto Rico was a colony of Spain, Piñero was educated in Puerto Rico until Puerto Rico came… Read more »

Issuance of Borinqueneer Congressional Medal Faces Delay

It has been reported that the Borinqueneers are frustrated by the fact that the Congressional Gold Medal approved by President Obama last year has still not been issued. Senator Marco Rubio sent a letter to the president pointing out that four of the Borinqueneers, all living members of which group are in their 80s by… Read more »

Rafael Celestino Benítez: Navy Hero

Rafael Celestino Benítez is just one of many Puerto Rican military heroes, but he has one of the most dramatic stories. Celestino Benítez was born in Juncos, Puerto Rico, educated in his hometown, and then appointed to the U.S. Naval Academy by then-Resident Commissioner Santiago Iglesias. He graduated in 1939 and entered service as a… Read more »