A commanding officer thought his soldier was awarded a medal after saving Marines in battle, and when he caught up with him decades later, he discovered no medal was received. The LAT has the story on Marine Pfc. Daniel Hernandez and his belated Silver Star:
The four-decade wait only made the honor more meaningful to Hernandez, 63, as several hundred relatives, friends and fellow veterans gathered for a ceremony in his honor at the Hollenbeck Youth Center. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-East Los Angeles) and a host of other state and city leaders attended.
They came in support of a man they had known for decades as a community youth leader and president of the Hollenbeck Youth Center, which provides after-school programs to keep children away from gangs and drugs.
Few knew Hernandez also was a war hero.
At the age of 20, Hernandez was a machine gunner with a company during Operation Utah in the Quang Ngai province and dove through enemy fire to save wounded Marines, despite being struck twice, according to the LAT. At Saturday’s two-hour ceremony, former Marines were there and “Welcome home, Danny!”
All of the story and a few pics at LATimes.