Twenty-something New Mexico native Manuel Ray Perez had already been honorably discharged by the U.S. Army, but after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor that started World War II, he knew he had to get back in the fight.
That determination, and a toss of the coin, put him on Omaha Beach, Normandy, Nazi-occupied France, on D-Day, 75 years ago today.
OFFICIAL DEFENSE DEPARTMENT BIOGRAPHY:
He was a yeoman on “Easy Red” sector of Omaha Beach with the 6th Beach Battalion — bullets screaming past him and hitting buddies and strangers all around during the Invasion of Normandy. And he was there because all he won a coin toss.
Retired Yeoman Chief Petty Officer Ray Perez has asked himself why he was there many times since then. He started asking in the hours after he and the 367 other enlisted men and 42 officers in his battalion cleared the way for the coming allied forces behind them. He wasn’t just there on D-Day, Perez was in one of the first units to hit the beach.
Seventeen year old Los Angeles-born Ralph Lazo (photo) voluntarily entered the Manzanar Japanese-American internment camp after learning his neighbors were being locked up by the government. He later joined the military and helped liberate the Philippines and spent his life “discouraging the occurrence of similar injustices and violations of civil liberties in the future.” [Video by Velshi and Ruhle for MSNBC.]
Did you ever ask yourself WHAT YOU WOULD DO if the time came when the Trump regime’s troopers came to round up your neighbors? THAT TIME IS NOW.
- Read more about RALPH LAZO at Wikipedia.
Mexico’s fastest mouse, our hero Speedy Gonzales, yells “Yeehaw”” over and over in this three-minute supercut cartoon video. SPOILER: The various gatitos and perritos are not amused.
Our hero Speedy Gonzales, Mexico’s fastest mouse, gets a simplistic but interesting bio in this short video. It’s cool to see the initial cartoon version of the rascally rodent (photo), and his later pairings with Daffy Duck. And the quick coverage of the “offensive stereotype” issue gives us this great screencap of Warner Bros’ Official Cover My Ass Statement:
“Western” adventure comics, true crime comics, and gringo-written history all came together when publisher Avon gave birth to a Pancho Villa issue as part of their notorious outlaws series:
Emilio Albert De La Garza, Jr. (June 23, 1949 – April 11, 1970) was a United States Marine who was posthumously presented the nation’s highest military honor — the Medal of Honor — for his heroism on April 11, 1970 in Vietnam.
Emilio Albert De La Garza, Jr. was born on June 23, 1949, in East Chicago, Indiana. He graduated from E.C. Washington High School in 1968. He was married to Rosemary Rejon and they have a daughter Renee (Lugo). He was employed by Inland Steel Company in East Chicago (Indiana Harbor), Indiana, before enlisting in the Marine Corps.
Marine Corps service
De La Garza enlisted in the United States Marine Corps on February 4, 1969, in Chicago, Illinois. He received recruit training with the 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, Recruit Training Regiment at the MCRD San Diego, California.
[Editor's Note: When we shared our Happy Birthday Ritchie Valens story on Facebook last Friday, FB user Danna Carina commented, "Ritchie was the subject of my senior thesis and I graduated with my Bachelors yesterday ON HIS BIRTHDAY. Good omen I suppose!"
We wanted to see what she wrote, and to share it with you.
She agreed, and noted, "Writing this paper was a very intimate and intellectual experience, so it makes me very happy to share it with Pocho.com and the Chicano community."
Thank you, Danna Carina, and congratulations on your graduation from SUNY Purchase.]
[There’s lots more from Alex Garcia de Aztlan on the Instagram.]
Eugene Arnold Obregon (November 12, 1930 – September 26, 1950) was a United States Marine who was posthumously awarded the United States’ highest military decoration for valor — the Medal of Honor — for sacrificing his life to save that of a wounded comrade during the Second Battle of Seoul.
On September 26, 1950, Private First Class Obregon was fatally wounded by enemy machine gun fire while using his body to shield a wounded fellow Marine.Eugene Arnold Obregon (November 12, 1930 – September 26, 1950) was a United States Marine who was posthumously awarded the United States’ highest military decoration for valor — the Medal of Honor — for sacrificing his life to save that of a wounded comrade during the Second Battle of Seoul.
His posthumous Medal of Honor for heroism came in 1919, but his acknowledgement as a Latino had to wait until 1989.
David Bennes Barkley was born March 31, 1899 in Laredo in Webb County in south Texas, to Josef and the former Antonia Cantú.
He grew up with his Mexican-American mother. He enlisted in the Army when the United States entered what was then known as the Great War.
He used his Anglo father’s name to avoid being segregated into a non-combat unit.
Michael Montenegro takes us to MacArthur Park in Los Angeles to see the gigantic mural of an iconic public school teacher — Jaime Escalante — and the actor who portrayed him in Stand and Deliver, the homie Edward James Olmos.
PREVIOUSLY ON TEACHERS:
Marina is exhausted but exhilarated. Her entrails are convulsing violently as she pumps hundreds of rounds into the hordes of CSA Minutemen coming at her from all sides. After two sleepless nights of hard battle, she can barely hold onto the trigger, which is a throttle gyrating wildly in her hands.
She is emptying magazines from eight different machine guns placed strategically on the exoskeleton of her BattleBot or “Bot.” Bots are oversized suits of armor, equipped with lasers, machine guns, rocket launchers, grenades, poison gas canisters and other weapons systems.
Bots are operated by specialized Bot Pilots working deep inside the steel behemoths, which weigh thousands of pounds and stand five stories high. BattleBots were secretly developed by the U.S. Army and were now widely used by armies around the world.
“Incoming,” squawks Marina’s radar. “Shit! Some pinche vendido traitor ratted us out,” Marina hisses into her headset as fighter jets roar overhead and the forest explodes all around her.