Two dozen veterans received the prestigious Medal of Honor from president Obama today.
“This ceremony is 70 years in the making. As one family member has said, this is long overdue,” says President Obama.
Only 3 of the honorees were still alive to receive the long overdue recognition.
All of whom served in Vietnam and performed heroic acts in 1969.
The service members, mainly Hispanics, Jews and African-Americans were initially overlooked by their racial or ethnic backgrounds.
The Medal of Honor is traditionally awarded to American soldiers who display “gallantry above and beyond the call of duty.”
The president noted that a medal of honor ceremony is always a special occasion, but today it is truly historic.
“This is the length to which America will go to make sure everyone who serves under our proud flag receives the thanks that they deserve,” adds Obama.
One of the Medal of Honor recipients is Pedro Cano of Edinburg, an army private who fought with bravery in World War II.
Cano joined the U.S. army in 1944 and was injured by a grenade during combat operations in Germany.
His daughter, Dominga Cano Perez accepted a posthumous medal of honor for her father.
An elementary school was named after this Texas hero and today faculty and staff watched closely this historic event.
Months after enlisting in the U.S. army in 1944, Pedro Cano found himself in a German forest, surrounded by Nazi soldiers. He sent nearly 30 to their deaths and lived to tell about it, until he died in a car crash in 1952.
There have been fewer than 3,500 of the medals awarded to the nation’s soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines and coast guardsmen since the medal was created in 1861.