Hispanic Americans - 1960s



Continuing the civil-rights progress with other ethnically diverse Americans in the United States during this time, Hispanic Americans continued to expand in the U.S. Navy and Marines. During this period, four Hispanic-American U.S. Marines received the nation's highest military award, the Medal of Honor, with three of them posthumously receiving the award.

Recipient Colonel Jay R. Vargas, USMC, survived his service in Vietnam and retired from the U.S. Marines in 1992 after completing thirty-years of service.

In 1964, Vice Admiral Horacio Rivero was promoted to full admiral and served as Commander in Chief of Allied Forces, Southern Europe until 1972 when he retired after forty-one years of service.

On 29 January 1967, Hospitalman Phil I Valdez, USN, served as a corpsman in Vietnam and continued to aid a wounded Marine, though he was mortally wounded in the process. Valdez was posthumously promoted and received the Navy Cross. Additionally, USS Valdez (FF-1096) was named in his honor.

Continue here for Hispanic Americans in the U.S. Navy - 1970s.

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Photo #: NH 94602-KN (Color)

Recruiting Poster

Admiral Rivero was promoted to full Admiral in 1964 and served as Commander in Chief of Allied Forces, Southern Europe. He retired in 1972 after forty-one years of service.
"The United States Navy Salutes Admiral Horacio Rivero " Poster by Timothy Gaussiran, then Navy Command Recruiting Employee, 1977.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 142KB; 715 x 925

 
Photo #: NH 106931

Captain Sonia (Rivera) Cuevas Gryske, USMC


Captain Gryske served in the U.S. Marine Corps from June 1956 to October 1964.

Courtesy of the Women in Military Service for America Memorial Foundation, Inc.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 63KB; 660 x 925

 
Photo #: NH 106952

Seaman Recruit Lilia Rodriguez, USNR

Halftone reproduction image from the official publication, "Graduating Company 1961," from U.S. Naval Training Center, Bainbridge, Maryland. Seaman Rodriguez was in Company Two and was born in Santurce, Puerto Rico.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 90KB; 750 x 925

 
Photo #: NH 94601-KN (Color)

Recruiting Poster

Hospitalman Phil I. Valdez, USN, served as corpsman in Vietnam. While helping a wounded Marine on 29 January 1967, he was mortally wounded administering aid. Valdez was posthumously promoted to Hospitalman Third Class and was awarded the Navy Cross. USS Valdez (FF-1096) was also named in his honor.
"The United States Navy Salutes Petty Officer Phil I. Valdez, USN". Recruiting Poster by artist Timothy Gaussian, Recruiting Command Employee, 1977.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 149KB; 730 x 925

 
Photo #: NH 106934

Sergeant Alfredo Gonzalez, USMC

Sergeant Gonzalez served as a Platoon Commander with Third Platoon, Company A, First Battalion, First Marines, First Marine Division during the Vietnam War. On 4 February 1968, during a fierce battle in the initial phases of Operation Hue City, he successfully knocked out a rocket position and suppressed much of the enemy fire before falling mortally wounded. For his "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life" on this occasion, Gonzalez was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.

Courtesy of the U.S. Marine Corps History Division.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 531KB; 695 x 925

 
Photo #: NH 106936

Colonel Jay R Vargas, USMC

Colonel Vargas served as Commanding Officer of Company G, Second Battalion, Fourth Marines, Ninth Marine Amphibious Brigade during the Vietnam War. In May 1968, then a Major, Vargas continued to lead his troops though seriously wounded at Dai Do. For his "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life" on this occasion, Vargas received the Medal of Honor. In 1992, he retired from the Marine Corps after thirty-years of service.

Courtesy of the U.S. Marine Corps History Division.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 80KB; 685 x 925

 
Photo #: NH 106935

Lance Corporal Jose F. Jimenez, USMC

Lance Corporal Jimenez served with Company K, Third Battalion, Seventh Marines, First Marine Division during the Vietnam War. During operations against the enemy south of DaNang, Quang Nam Province, he was killed in action on 28 August 1969. For his "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life" on this occasion, Jimenez was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.

Courtesy of the U.S. Marine Corps History Division.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 95KB; 700 x 925

 
Photo #: NH 106933

Private First Class Ralph H. Dias, USMC


Private First Class Ralph E. Dias served as a Rifleman with Company D, First Battalion, Seventh Marines, First Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force during the Vietnam War. On 12 November 1969, he was killed in combat while bravely destroying enemy emplacements in the Quang Nam Province. For his "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life" on this occasion, Dias was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.

Courtesy of the U.S. Marine Corps History Division.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 64KB; 685 x 925

 



For higher resolution images see: Obtaining Photographic Reproductions

To the best of our knowledge, the pictures referenced here are all in the Public Domain, and can therefore be freely downloaded and used for any purpose.





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