As National Hispanic Heritage month approaches, it is important to not only look back and recognize the accomplishments of the Hispanic/Latino community but to also honor all of our Hispanic/Latino veterans, who have made history by fighting for our rights and have helped drive hard-won progress for all the community.

Only 3.2 percent of Latinos served in the U.S. Armed Forces during WWII. 3.2 percent of both men and women, who chose the uniform and committed themselves to defend our country. Their devotion to our Nation is the prime example of their tenacity, bravery, and perseverance.

These characteristics are a few of many that can be seen in the sacrifice of Vicente Moreno and David Loredo.

Vincente Moreno, born in 1924, served in the U.S Army from 1943 to 1945, in the 475th Infantry Regiment, Long-Range Penetration, and the 5332nd Special Ops Brigade. For his service and sacrifice, he received the Infantry Combat Badge, Bronze Star for Valor, Two Asiatic Pacific Battle Stars, Good Conduct Medal, and WWII Victory Medals.

David Moreno, born in 1925, was drafted to serve in the U.S. Army at the age of 18 in 1942—months after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. In 1945, while leading a Recon Patrol, he became wounded, after his unit hit the beach in the Philippine Islands on the second wave. For his actions, he received a Silver Star and a Purple Heart.

Today, we celebrate and honor the bravery of Vicente Moreno and David Loredo, and recognize their valuable contributions to our society.

Veterans Luncheon 17