El Morro A story of survival in San Juan, Page 14 Wounded Warriors treated to lunch, Page 20 Fort BuchananCommunityimages nowavailable onVol. 47 issue 8 The Sentinel of the Caribbean March 2012Family receives fallen Soldier’s service awardBy Pedro Silva In a solemn ceremony held award posthumously. The The medal was presented duty greatly contributed toFort Buchanan Public Affairs the overwhelming success of at Fort Buchanan’s Survivor medal is a military decora- to his family for Sgt. Ramos Strength can be defined in Outreach Services facility on tion presented to members Velázquez’s meritorious ser- his unit’s mission. His ac-many ways – through an act February 10, 2012, the Meri- of the United States Armed vice as a combat medic from tions were in keeping withof bravery and valor, kind- torious Service Medal was Forces who distinguished September 20, 2007 to Feb- the finest traditions of theness and charity, or the cour- presented to Luis Ramos, fa- themselves by outstanding ruary 21, 2011. Sgt. Ramos military service and reflectage and will to overcome ad- ther of Sgt. Louie A. Ramos meritorious achievement or Velázquez’s exemplary per-versity. Velázquez who received the service to the nation. formance and devotion to MSM Page 9 News RAHC wins award for excellence Story and photos By Luis Delgadillo Fort Buchanan Public Affairs The coveted Army Surgeon General’s Excalibur Award, was awarded to the Rodriguez Army Health Clinic at the annual Joint Services Military Health Sys- New jobs open , Page 4 tems Conference Feb. 2 in Na- tional Harbor, MD. Lt. Gen. Patricia D. Horo- ho, the Army surgeon general Office Moves and Command Sergeant Maj. The Security Division, Donna A. Brock, the Medical Plans and Operations Di- Command, command sergeant vision and the Emergency major, presented the award to Operations Center moved to Col. Danny Jaghab, commander Bldg. 390, 2nd floor, DPT- of the Rodriguez Army Health MS office area. Please con- Clinic. tact the following personnel Just 5 of these awards are for issues pertaining to: given to Army medical organi- Security: Myriam Mo- zations annually throughout the rales, security assistant, Army Medical Department to 707-5596; German Garcia, recognize teams and organiza- Photo by Luis Delgadillo security specialist, 707- 5544; or Evelyn Rivera, se- tions that demonstrate innova- From left: Eduardo Colón, deputy commander, Noelia Baez, utilization nurse, Col. Danny Jaghab, commander, Mil- tive thinking and which contin- dred Morales, managed care director and Eduardo Vidot, contact representative, pose for a photo with the Excalibur curity manager, 707-3275. award Feb. 14. Jaghab received the award from Army Surgeon General, Lt. Gen. Patricia D. Horoho at the annual Plans and Operations Di- uously strive to work smarter to Joint Services Military Health Systems Conference Feb. 2 in Washington D.C. vision and the Emergency improve performance. Operations Center: Rey- “The RAHC goal was to aug- bers of his staff who displayed with “Personalismo” (interper- Baez, the utilization review naldo T. Rodriguez, instal- ment the surgeon general’s cul- the qualities the award recog- sonal relationships) created by nurse visited these providers in lation emergency manager/ ture of trust ideology by creat- nizes was Mildred Morales, Morales and her staff of health order to improve communica- plans and operations spe- ing a trust program specific to RAHC’s managed care director. benefit advisors, included an in- tion, show the clinic’s apprecia- cialist, 707-3413; Angel A. the USAR (US Army Reserve) “It’s a great award and it’s an tensive medical orientation for tion and reiterate the importance Vazquez, emergency man- and USNG (US Army National honor for me to be part of the Soldiers and their families to the of access to care and standards agement specialist, 707- Guard) in order to improve ac- staff for the US Army Health network providers called Health of care for military members 3287; Miguel A. Aponte, cess to care, and continuity of Clinic and receive the award. Information Tours. and their families. operations specialist, 707- care while ensuring the TRI- It represents a lot of the things With an emphasis on respect, “I am very grateful that Col. 3395; Ramon Figueroa, CARE network providers re- the clinic has been doing for a honor and courtesy, “Office Jaghab has taken this step of antiterrorism officer, 707- mained trusted stewards for many years for our population. Calls” were also conducted to submitting for this award be- 3393; or Roberto Lugo, an- titerrorism security special- MEDCOM and our commu- It’s great customer service and the 10 most utilized network cause it’s one of the programs ist, 707-3504. nity,” said Jaghab. quality care,” said Morales. providers. The RAHC com- Jaghab said one of the mem- The managed care program mander, Morales and Noelia CARE Page 6
2March 2012 The Command Group The Sentinel of the Caribbean El Morro Fort Buchanan Commander’s Commentary This month marks two sig- all members of the commu- ployed in support of overseas invite you all to participate nificant recognition months. nity to volunteer their time to contingencies operations. in the discussion online. To March is both Women’s support this amazing organi- In fact, according to their the women service members History Month and American zation. Web Site the organizations’s proudly serving a nation at Red Cross month. Please be According to the American charter in 1905 officially es- war I would like to offer my El Morro on the lookout through out Red Cross Web site at www. tablished the emergency no- sincere gratitude on behalf of Garrison Commander the installation for the in- redcross.org, “the American tification system troops know Command Sgt. Maj. Derrick Col. John D. Cushman formation booths at the Ex- Red Cross shelters, feeds and today. Before this, Clara Bar- T. Simpson and the rest of the Deputy to the Garrison Commander change Mall and don’t miss provides emotional support to ton, the founder of the Amer- command group. Gunnar G.F. Pedersen Jr. messages coming through the victims of disasters; supplies ican Red Cross, was helping As our Army goes through Deputy Commander marquees operated by the Di- more than 40 percent of the wounded Soldiers write let- change there is no doubt in Lt. Col. Kenneth M. Hammond rectorate of Family and Mo- nation’s blood; teaches skills ters to family members. my mind that the roles of Garrison Command Sergeant Major rale, Welfare and Recreation. that save lives; provides in- As a way of honoring Ms. women will continue to ex- Command Sgt. Maj. Derrick T. Simpson In addition to important mes- ternational humanitarian aid; Barton’s commitment I’d also pand. Public Affairs Officer sages concerning DFMWR and supports military mem- like to highlight the contribu- The first indication of such Grissel Rosa the marquees will be display- bers and their families. The tions of our fellow women action can clearly be seen on Media Relations Pedro Silva ing Red Cross information. Red Cross is a not-for-profit service members who have page four of El Morro, with Command Information On more than one occa- organization that depends on served both in uniform and the expansion of some roles Luis Delgadillo sion Fort Buchanan leaders volunteers and the generos- out of uniform ever since the for women in combat. El Morro Contributors have called on you, the com- ity of the American public to Revolutionary War. Just as they have through- Capt. Taylor Opel Luis Salazar munity, to participate in the perform its mission.” Throughout the month, out the history of our nation, 1st Mission Support Command highly successful American This amazing group has Fort Buchanan’s Facebook there is no doubt in my mind Public Affairs Officer Maj. Carlos M. Cuebas Red Cross blood donation also been an enormous sup- page will feature news sto- that our sisters in arms will Mailing address — program. In the same spirit port system to countless ser- ries and information regard- continue to distinguish them- Public Affairs Office Building 390 Crane Loop Ste. 311 of selflessness, I encourage vice members who have de- ing Women in the Military. I selves in the future. The Army’s Backbone Fort Buchanan PR, 00934-4616 Story submissions — E-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org Command Sgt. Maj. Derrick T. Simpson Telephone numbers — (787)707-5762/4486 Fax: (787)707-3362 1st MSC submissions — E-mail to: email@example.com In order to call ourselves subordinates will lose faith that their injuries mean the to feel self-pity. I commend 1st MSC telephone number — leaders we must subscribe to in our ability to lead. Worse, end of their military careers. the majority of Soldiers who (787)707-4988 the idea of personal account- they may even take our mis- In many of them I recognized choose the hard right over El Morro is an authorized publica- ability. Our actions, whether deeds as complicity for their a deep desire to continue to the easy wrong. tion printed in accordance with Army it’s respecting the tradition own poor behavior. serve the nation but in all I Like our Wounded War- Regulation 360-1. Contents of El Morro are not neces- of saluting The Colors dur- This inevitably results in see a concern for what their riors we must begin to focus sarily the official views of, or endorsed ing retreat or picking up lit- the devolution of an organi- injuries might mean for the on doing what is right legally by, the U.S. Government, the Depart- ment of Defense, Department of the ter we carelessly drop, shape zation’s culture. At a recent well-being of their families. and morally. Army or U.S. Army Garrison, Fort how our subordinates view event, I had the good for- They are brave for con- I’d also like to take a mo- Buchanan. El Morro is published monthly by of us. When was the last time tune of meeting with some of fronting a clouded future ment and thank the volunteers the Public Affairs Office, U.S. Army Garrison. Circulation 5,000. you looked at yourself in the the Wounded Warriors from and they deserve recognition who work at the Chaplain’s All editorial content of El Morro mirror and asked yourself are Fort Buchanan’s Commu- and respect, not pity. Our office and who make these is prepared, edited, provided and ap- proved by the U.S. Army Garrison you being the best you can nity Based Warrior Transi- community stands by these events possible. Through Public Affairs Office. For guidance on be? Are you maximize your tion Unit. Meeting with these Wounded Warriors. Despite their spirit of community and how to submit items for publication e- mail the garrison Public Affairs Office. true potential? Are you giv- Soldiers inspired me to write the injuries they may have selflessness our installation The Editor reserves right to edit all ing a 100%? Are you doing about personal accountability suffered, now more than ever will continue to thrive. submissions and to determine the suit- ability for inclusion in El Morro. what is right? Are you physi- because as they navigate the before they have the tools at Leadership comes in many Every effort will be made to publish submissions in a timely manner. How- cally and mentally fit? Are healthcare system gauntlet their disposal, which can en- forms and one of the most ever, time, layout, style and editorial you proficient in your job? or cut through red tape they sure they succeed long after important hallmarks of a considerations, as well as determina- tions for publication, are made by the As a noncommissioned offi- must be accountable to them- they complete their service to good leader is to leave an Commander or the Public Affairs Of- cer are you counseling your selves in order to recuperate. the nation. organization in better shape ficer. Soldiers? We need to get There is only so much By reinforcing their than it was when he arrived. back to the basics. mentoring a noncommis- strengths and building up Not all organizations need One thing we cannot lose sioned officer can do. It is up their weaknesses our Wound- complete overhauls but they is their respect through to that junior Soldier to take ed Warriors will reach their do require regular tune-ups thoughtless actions. If we use action and ensure a speedy goals in life. This is how we to keep them on track. the Army Values as a guide recovery or a smooth transi- build resilience. It’s too easy If you see some one do- we will rarely falter in our tion to civilian life. to go down the path of self- ing the wrong thing, do your endeavor to lead effectively I cannot imagine the diffi- destruction; to drink, to abuse duty and correct them. If that but if we find ourselves cut- culty CBWTU Soldiers face prescription drugs, to be late someone is you, then take a ting corners or compromis- as they struggle with their for a formation, to come to moment and remember what ing ourselves because of self- limitations and in some cases work out of uniform, to over it means to be a part of a ishness, then our peers and come to terms with the idea eat, and to allow our selves team. Army Strong!
El MorroFort Buchanan From The Top The Sentinel of the Caribbean 3 March 2012Today’s Women Soldiers March: Women’s Prior to the 1994 DoD as-signment rule, 67 percent ofthe positions in the Army were E-7 (rank of sergeant first class) through E-9 (rank of first ser- geant), who went from 8.3 per- Historically 1983: Women account- History Monthopen to women cent in 1995 to approximately ed for 9.8 percent of the Across many years and cul- mains immensely proud of the Today, 70 percent of the po- 10.8 percent as of fiscal year total Army. tures, women have fought to be accomplishments and the sac-sitions in the Army are open to 2009. 1993: Women account- empowered and treated equal to rifices of these brave women aswomen, and women serve in 93 In the grades General Sched- ed for 12.5 percent of their male counterparts. Educa- they continue to courageouslypercent of all Army occupations ule - 13 through senior execu- the total Army. tion has long been considered serve as Soldiers, Civilians and(active duty and the reserve tive service, the percentage of 2009: Women account- the great equalizer in society, Family members.components), as of June 2009. female civilian Army employ- ed for 15.5 percent of giving every person -- regard- History is clear: when put Women represent about 13.4 ees increased from 18.9 percent the total Army. less of race, gender or creed to the test, our Army womenpercent of the active Army, 23.7 in 1995 to 30.9 percent as of fis- Information from Army.mil --the knowledge and skills nec- have displayed incredible intel-percent of the Army Reserve cal year 2009. essary to make the most of op- ligence, leadership, patriotismand 14.0 percent of the Army portunities. After the American and courage. As we celebrateNational Guard as of fiscal year Revolution, basic educational_ Women’s History month, we en-2009. opportunities for women and courage our entire Army Family An increasing proportion of men were created as a safeguard to plan and execute commemo-senior-level active duty and for democracy, and that com- rative activities that celebrateDoD positions are being filled mitment to education laid the and pay tribute to the countlessby women. foundation for women to make contributions of all women to The percentage of female indelible contributions in every our Nation.officers in the active Army in field, including security and Signed,grades O-4 (rank of major) and defense. We have all benefitted Raymond F. Chandlerabove increased from 11.5 per- tremendously from the distin- Sergeant Major of the Armycent in fiscal year 1995 to 13.3 guished service and selfless sac-percent in fiscal year 2009. rifice of women at all levels of The same is true for enlisted Raymond T. Odierno, our Army and our Nation.active-duty women in grades General United States Army Throughout our Army’s Chief of the ArmyThoughts from the Chaplain’s office 236-year history, women have served this Nation valiantly and with distinction, in times John M. McHugh, of peace and war. Our Army re- Secretary of the Army set of instinctive fears; the “The fear of the Lord fear of falling, the fear of the is pure, enduring for- dark, the fear of lobsters, and ever.” the fear of falling on lobsters -Psalm 19 in the dark.” We are all afraid of some- thing. Fear of failure, of loss, Fear can be a very moti- of rejection, of the future.vational factor in our lives. We all have fears. God is notScripture reminds us that surprised by our fears. Thefear of the Lord is the begin- words, “Fear not” is found atning of knowledge. Psalm 19 least 366 times throughoutrepeats that, “the fear of the the Bible. God wants HisLord is pure, enduring for- people not to live in fear. It Assistant Chaplain,ever.” I think the best way is very easy for us to read, Capt. Timothy Stansberryto view this kind of fear is to “Fear not” but it is tough to live out. I am not under any opportunity for God to dohave reverence for God. If false assumption that after something in your life and toyou fear God you do not have hearing two words that you enhance your faith.to fear anything else. are going to walk away and I want to leave you with To fear the Lord does not Fort Buchanan Chapel Schedule never fear again. that challenge for this Lentenmake you weak but it can I realize that for many of us season. To give God youractually lead to strength in Roman Catholic Masses Protestant our fears are a lot bigger than fear, let God enhance youryour life. The prophet Josh- Sunday mornings — 11:30 a.m. Collective Protestant Service what I can offer you. But I faith. — Post Chapel Sunday morning — 9:00 a.m.ua wrote, “Do not be afraidor discouraged. For the Lord can offer you God’s word. I Confessions: Sunday mornings — Post Chapel.your God is with you wher- can offer you a reminder that –11:00 a.m.—Post Chapel 1st Sunday of every Month — 3 God is with you and wants to Weekdays, call 244-4981 or 707- p.m. —Youth Ministry—Chapelever you go.” be with you in the midst of 3904. Annex, Bldg. 292 Everyone has fears. One Preparation for Confirmation,of my favorite humorous au- your fears to help you grow First Communion, Counseling: Call the Chapel of-thors wrote this about fear, through your fears. Within RCIA, etc. call 707-3904. fice at 707-3904 or 238-7668.“All of us are born with this every great fear is a great
4March 2012 News The Sentinel of the Caribbean El Morro Fort BuchananArmy opens more jobs to womenBy Gary Sheftick day afternoon that they haveArmy News Service notified Congress of their in- tent to open these MOSs to WASHINGTON - The Army women, and the change willannounced its intent today to become effective after 30 daysopen six occupational special- of continuous Congressionalties and more than 13,000 posi- session, as required by law.tions to women. This is expected to occur later These six military occupa- in the spring, said Maj. Gen.tional specialties, or MOSs, Gary Patton, principal directorwere previously closed to for DOD Military Personnelwomen because they were nor- Policy.mally co-located with direct In addition, officials an-combat units: nounced that another 1,186--13M Multiple Launch Rock- positions at battalion levelet System crew member would be opened to women in--13P MLRS Operations/Fire the Army, Marine Corps andDirection Specialist Navy. These are in specialties--13R Field Artillery Firefinder already filled by women, butRadar Operator Specialist only at the brigade or higher--91A M1 Abrams Tank Sys- level.tem Maintainer The 1994 DOD policy --91M Bradley Fighting Ve- known as the Direct Ground Courtesy photohicle System Maintainer Combat Definition and As--- 91P Artillery Mechanic signment Rule had prohibited Master Sgt. Renee Baldwin fires a .50-caliber machine gun during training last summer at Joint Multinational Train- ing Command’s Grafenwoehr range in Germany. Women will soon be allowed in six additional military occupational DOD officials said at a Pen- women from serving in combat specialties normally located with combat units.tagon press conference Thurs- units below the brigade level. But the secretary of Defense there often is no front line, said haven’t served before. Training After six months, DOD will has now granted an excep- Deputy Under Secretary of them as tank mechanics, for assess the feedback from wom- tion to policy to allow women Defense for Military Personnel instance, will take longer than en serving in the new positions to serve in some positions in Policy Virginia “Vee” Penrod. placing them at battalion level and use the information to takeThe battle space we have combat units at the battalion “The battle space we have in MOSs they already know, he another look at the suitabil-experienced in Afghani- level. The six specialties pre- experienced in Afghanistan said. ity and relevance of the directstan and Iraq require our viously barred to women were and Iraq require our forces to Women will be placed in ground combat unit assign- due to the “co-location” ele- be distributed across the coun- the new positions as men are ment prohibition, Penrod said.forces to be distributed ment of the 1994 policy. That try,” Penrod said. “There is no scheduled to rotate out, Patton “This is the beginning of theacross the country provision has restricted women rear area that exists in this bat- said. A normal rotation sched- end” of the combat exclusion from serving in MOSs that by tle space. Continuing to restrict ule will be followed and men policy, she added. Virginia “Vee” Penrod doctrine are located with com- positions as solely on being will not leave the positions ear- “We recognize the expanded - Deputy Under Secretary of bat units. co-located with direct combat lier than expected, he said. role of women in the military,” Defense for Military DOD intends to eliminate the units has become irrelevant.” About 280,000 positions Patton said. “I’ve seen women Personnel Policy “co-location” provision due to Patton said it may take some across the services remain in combat perform in an ex- the non-linear and fluid nature time to recruit and train women closed to women due to the panded role. I’m very proud of of today’s battlefield where in the six specialties where they combat exclusion policy. them.”
El MorroFort Buchanan News The Sentinel of the Caribbean 5 March 20122013 re-enlistment window narrows for SoldiersBy David Larsen best Soldiers,” the Secretary counselor said of the new tery/troop level to counsel rently serving on an indefi-III Corps and Fort Hood Public Affairs of the Army’s directive stat- directive. “It places more their Soldiers prior to re- nite re-enlistment contract ed. emphasis for retention at enlistment,” Coleman said. will be considered unquali- FORT HOOD, Texas -- In “Here at Fort Hood, we the brigade level. The big- “It’s during these counseling fied for re-enlistment if theiran effort to address a down- echo that sentiment,” Com- gest thing is for the author- sessions that we can look a Official Military Personnelsizing Army, Army Directive mand Sgt. Maj. Arthur L. ity to deny re-enlistment to Soldier in the eye and tell File contains one of the fol-2012-03, Army Retention Coleman Jr., III Corps and a qualified Soldier which is them where they are defi- lowing:Initiatives, goes into effect Fort Hood command ser- shifting down to the brigade cient, whether it’s physical • Relief-for-Cause Non-March 1, the same day the geant major, said Feb. 10. commander’s level.” fitness, marksmanship or a commissioned Officer Eval-re-enlistment window opens “In III Corps, our Soldiers “Tough decisions are disciplinary issue. Each Sol- uation Report, or NCOERfor Soldiers whose service need to have an expedition- ahead,” stated a letter re- dier should know where they • A “No” listed in Part IVcontract ends in fiscal year ary mindset. By that, I mean leased to commands accom- stand.” (Army Values, attributes,2013. they need to be mentally and panying the newest reten- In addition to having bri- skills, actions) The directive, released physically prepared to do our tion directive, signed by the gade commanders make re- • A senior rater rating offrom the Secretary of the nation’s business.” Secretary of the Army, Army tention determinations of 4 (fair) or 5 (poor) in Part VArmy John McHugh on Feb. The directive requires Chief of Staff Raymond Odi- their troops, several new -- Overall Performance and2 places additional restric- commanders to “ensure that erno and Sergeant Major of guidelines have been imple- Potential of an NCOERtions for some mid-grade only the best qualified Sol- the Army Raymond Chan- mented by the Secretary of • A Service School Aca-noncommissioned officers to diers of those eligible are re- dler III. “Some fully quali- the Army’s directive. demic Evaluation Report in-re-enlist, as well as five ad- enlisted” and that brigade- fied Soldiers will be denied In addition to re-enlist- dicating a failure in an NCOditional events, which will level commanders and above re-enlistment. Commanders ment qualifications already Education System coursebe cause for a Soldier’s bar “will deny re-enlistment to must carefully assess their outlined in Army Regulation The directive states thatto re-enlistment. those Soldiers not deemed Soldiers and ensure only our 601-280, or AR 601-280, “requests for waivers will be “We will use the draw- best qualified.” best Soldiers are retained to Army Retention Program, considered on a case-by-casedown as an opportunity to “That’s a big change, in it- meet the needs of our Army.” the new directive states that basis,” submitted throughshape our Army by ensuring self,” Sgt. Maj. Robert Sluss, “We direct every com- “Soldiers in the grade of staffthat we retain only our very III Corps command career mander at the company/bat- sergeant and above not cur- WINDOW Page 8Army Emergency Relief Kicks Off 2012 Campaign ALEXANDRIA, Va., financial assistance, Soldiers added in the last two years.March 1, 2012 – Headquar- and Families can receive well In 2011 Army Emergencyters, Army Emergency Relief deserved care and consider- Relief provided $77.5 mil-(AER) announced the start of ation in a time of need.” lion in assistance to morethe Annual AER Campaign Established in response to than 64,000 Soldiers and theirwhich runs from March 1, insuring there was an agency Families. Under the stream-2012 through May 15, 2012. available that could provide lined Command Referral Pro- The theme of this year’s prompt financial assistance gram, Company Command-Campaign is “A Strong Tradi- for Soldiers and their Fami- ers and First Sergeants havetion of Soldiers Helping Sol- lies during World War II, AER the authority to approve AERdiers.” provides emergency financial loans for their Soldiers up to For the last 70 years, the assistance in the form of no- $1,500.campaign objectives have re- interest loans or grants. AER assistance is basedmained the same: “To create In addition, AER provides upon a valid need and is flex-greater awareness of Army scholarships to children and ible in responding to all typesEmergency Relief programs spouses of active duty and re- of financial situations. AERand benefits; and to give Sol- tired Soldiers as well as finan- Officers work toward “Find-diers the opportunity to help cial support to widows and ing a way to say Yes.” St., Suite 101 Ft. Buchanan, Book application for smarttheir fellow Soldiers.” Wounded Warriors. There is no limit on the PR. Soldiers and Families not phones. For more informa- “The primary objective Beginning in January 2012, amount of assistance that can near an Army installation can tion contact Guy Shields atof the annual campaign is to AER added four new catego- be provided, and no limit on get AER assistance at an Air firstname.lastname@example.org orcreate a greater awareness of ries of assistance to include: the number of times a Soldier Force, Navy, Marine Corps 703.325.1692. Follow AERhow Army Emergency Relief family member dental care, may make requests for assis- or Coast Guard base from the on Facebook: AER HQ Face-helps Soldiers and their fami- basic furniture needs, rental tance. Air Force Aid Society, Navy book Pagelies,” said AER’s director, re- vehicles and replacement ve- Soldiers requiring AER as- Marine Corps Relief Society, For more information abouttired Army Lt. Gen. Robert hicles. sistance should contact their and Coast Guard Mutual As- the annual campaign or toFoley, “By promoting a better These additions were made unit Chain of Command or go sistance respectively or from contribute, please contactunderstanding of AER bene- to meet the changing needs of to their local installation AER the American Red Cross call Chief Marlene Rivera , Cam-fits, easy access to AER funds today’s Soldiers and Families. office for information. center at 877.272.7337. paign Coordinator at (787)and the flexibility which AER Based upon feedback from The AER office is located Additional program infor- 707 - 5154, or by e-mail:officers worldwide exercise our AER Officers worldwide, at Army Community Service mation is available at www. email@example.com responding to requests for nine new categories have been Building 390, Crane Loop aerhq.org or in the Army Blue mil
6March 2012 News The Sentinel of the Caribbean El Morro Fort Buchanan1st MSC builds strong families for ArmyBy Sgt. José F. Babilonia by strengthening the Army where couples can experi- “The Strong Bonds pro- assist with concerns about1st MSC Public Affairs Family. The core mission of ence that “get away” feel- gram is the Army premier health and wellness, even cri- Fajardo, PR-Have you ever the program is to increase in- ing, in order to maximize the relationship enhancement sis intervention.wanted to go to a luxury re- dividual soldier and family training effect, as well as to program. It is designed to “Most suicides attempts aresort, with all expenses paid? members’ readiness, through make it a fun environment. straighten the soldier’s re- directly related to the pain ofWell, the Strong Bonds pro- relationship education and The Strong Bonds program lationships pre, during and a relationship breakup. Thegram could be the answer to skills training. educates service members post deployments,” said Lt. Strong Bonds initiative givesmake this dream a reality. One of the great charac- and families about the impact Col. Curtis Muldrow, Deputy the soldiers the tools on how Strong Bonds is a unit- teristics of the Strong Bond of relocations, deployments, Commander Chaplain for the to straighten relationships,”based, chaplain-led program, initiative is that it takes place and military lifestyle stress- 1st Mission Support Com- added Muldrow.which assists commanders in in an off site retreat format, ors, among other topics. mand, the largest US Army The program not only fo-building individual resiliency usually at well rated hotels, Strong Bonds has been part Reserve Command in the Ca- cuses on relationships at risk, of the Army readiness effort ribbean. but also reinforces the healthy since 1997. Since then, more “The soldiers’ relationship ones. than 160,000 soldiers and at home, with their families, “If you have a good qual- family members across the is vital to the soldiers’ morale ity relationship that you like, Army have benefited from and readiness,” added Chap- then I can assure you that our this initiative. The program’s lain Muldrow. program will teach you how success has led to increased Specific training is offered to straighten it and make it funding, expansion Army- for single soldiers, couples, even better” said Muldrow. wide, and more training op- families with children, and all There are several Strong tions. In Puerto Rico, the pro- soldiers and families facing Bonds retreats scheduled in gram has impacted thousands deployment. Puerto Rico in 2012. If you of military families. During the Strong Bond want to participate and per- For the US Army Reserve- retreat, soldiers and families haps achieve your dreams of Puerto Rico, which this year participate in small group ac- staying in a high rated hotel celebrates 90 years serving tivities that reveal common free of charge, contact Chap- the nation, Strong Bonds bonds and nurture friend- lain Lt. Col. Curtis MuldrowThirty five couples renewed their wedding vows at the Palomino Island, dur- has been a tremendous asset ships. In addition, partici- at 787-707-4956 or 787-707-ing the Strong Bonds event held at the El Conquistador Hotel & Resort inFajardo, 27-29 Jan. The Strong Bonds program focuses on soldiers’ relation- for the readiness of the com- pants gain awareness of com- 4957, or by e-mail Curtis.ships, both with their partners and their families. mand. munity resources that can firstname.lastname@example.orgCARE, From Page 1 Jaghab said that at the heart of the clin- ics success lie the efforts of Col. Virginiaor things that we do on a daily basis, the Yates, previous RAHC commander, Dr.staff of the Rodriguez Army Health Clin- Janelle Torres, medical director, Familyic, … for the population that we serve. Practice, Eduardo Colon, deputy com-We are very proud of serving all of the mander, Ruben Rivera, Chief Nurse,services,” said Morales Mildred Morales Delgado, managed care By establishing an atmosphere of Per- director Eduardo Vidot, health benefitssonalismo and creating planned com- advisor, Mali Rivera, health benefits ad-munity outreach with our TRICARE visor Noelia Baez, and utilization man-network providers, relationships are so- agement nurselidified and trust is improved. As a re- The award was given to the clinic forsult network providers are more apt to be the time when the problem with care wasmore customer focused. recognized in July of 2010 to the project Jaghab said that after the implemen- start date in October 2010 through thetation of the “Personalismo” Health In- evaluation date of July 2011. This time isformation Tours and “Office Calls” with specific to the award but program evalu-network providers, a sustained improve- ation is ongoing.ment in the percentage of usage allowing “To me, this award symbolizes the Courtesy photothe same access potential was achieved much deserved recognition for each one Army Medical Command’s, Command Sgt. Maj. Donna A. Brock and Lt. Gen. Patricia D. Horoho, the Army surgeon general present Col. Danny Jaghab, commander of the Rodriguez Army Healthat no cost. of my 50 RAHC staff members from our Clinic with the Excalibur award Feb. 2. See the ad on page 19, which features RAHC tour info. The 5 Excalibur criterion that were be- Top leader (the surgeon general). It is hering judged on all entries were: Process way of recognizing the great work they sionate about the clinic’s success and who support them is simple to do, incursoriented, Multidisciplinary, Increased (clinic staff) perform each day and the together they work tirelessly each day to no expenses and results in greater trust invalue for patient and customers, Im- great community we service at large,” make innovative improvements. the medical system and a more pleasantproved quality of care, and Sustainable said Jaghab. “Showing appreciation to our patients, medical experience for our community,”and system wide replication potential. Jaghab said the RAHC team is pas- their families and the network providers he said.
El MorroFort Buchanan News The Sentinel of the Caribbean 7 March 2012DPW completes contaminant removal The Army’s first SMA passes away By Rob McIlvaineBy Derrick Stepanof Army News ServiceEnvironmental Restoration Manager WASHINGTON - The first sergeant major of the Army, On Jan. 18, the Fort Bu- William O. Wooldridge, diedchanan community received March 5, in El Paso, Texas, ata “No Further Action Letter” age 89.from the Puerto Rico En- When Wooldridge beat outvironmental Quality Board 4,700 candidates in 1966 for a(PREQB) due to the comple- new position created by the chieftion of the restoration effort of staff of the Army, he had beenat Site 746 where the former serving for a year as 1st InfantryArmy Criminal Investigation Division sergeant major in theDivision facility was located. Republic of Vietnam. Sergeant Major of the Army In 1997 an Underground “SMA Wooldridge was a (Ret.) William O. WooldridgeStorage Tank (UST) that con- one-of-a-kind noncommis-tained fuel for an emergency Courtesy Photo sioned officer, selected to be the the only SMA to return to fieldgenerator was removed. The In this undated photo directorate of Public Works employees pull the rem- first sergeant major of the Army duty after serving in the top en-tank leaked and diesel fuel nants of an underground fuel storage tank. Fort Buchanan’s Environmental because of his initiative, intel- listed position.impacted the surrounding Restoration Manager, Derrick Stepanof said that work continues on three ligence, experience and drive to Born Aug. 12, 1922, nearsoil. Several soil removal other underground storage tank sites. excel,” said current Sgt. Maj. of Shawnee, Okla., Wooldridge’sevents took place until clean the Army Raymond F. Chandler family moved about five yearssoil was encountered. (PREQB) under the legal and the U.S. Army Corps of III. “His lasting impression lives later to his father’s home state A total of 240 cubic yards driver of the Resource Con- Engineers. Currently there on in the United States Army of Texas where he later enlistedof fuel impacted soil was re- servation Recovery Act are ten Restoration Sites that Sergeants Major Academy, the in the Army after persuading hismoved from the area. Dur- (RCRA) - Subtitle I (Under- are being cleaned-up. centralized NCO promotion dad to let him go.ing the soil removal opera- ground Storage Tanks). Since Site 746 was closed, system, and our professional “I had this one thing on mytion, an unknown UST was The technical point of con- there are only three remain- NCO Corps.” mind,” said Wooldridge in adiscovered containing diesel tact is Derrick Stepanof, ing areas of concern that “He was an innovator, a true Feb. 2001 interview with Sgt.fuel. environmental restoration previously involved USTs, inspiration to Soldiers, and the Maj. Don Elder from the Center The tank and its contents manager, at telephone 787- which supplied diesel fuel epitome of a professional war- of Military History, “I wanted towere removed; then soil 707-3573 or e-mail: derrick. for emergency generators rior. Our hearts and prayers go wear a Soldier uniform. I want-samples were collected to email@example.com. and a former service station. out to Patty and the rest of the ed to be a Soldier, and I wantedconfirm clean closure con- This initiative represents The U.S. Army’s environ- Wooldridge family during this to get the hell out of Brownditions. Clean backfill was a combined effort between mental goal is to complete all difficult time,” said Chandler, County, Texas.replaced. Fort Buchanan’s Directorate restoration response projects the 14th SMA. The interview was conducted The UST sites are regu- of Public Works’ Environ- by 2019 and Fort Buchanan Wooldridge served as ser- at Wooldridge’s quarters in San-lated by the Puerto Rico En- mental Division, the Army has proposed its completion geant major of the Army from ta Teresa, N.M., near El Paso.vironmental Quality Board Environmental Command, by 2014. July 11, 1966, after leaving He enlisted at Fort Worth, Vietnam and arriving at the Texas on Nov. 11, 1940 and Pentagon in his jungle fatigues, served until 1972, amassing a Disabled American Veterans Puerto Rico through September 1968 and is credited with improving the much-decorated career over three wars and 14 campaigns. status of the noncommissioned He was awarded the Silver Officers Corps. He did this by: Star for gallantry at the battle for Local Point of Contact • Starting the first Major Com- Aachen, Germany in October Alexis Martinez mand Sergeants Major Confer- 1944 and also received a Pur- ence in 1966, which resulted in ple Heart for injuries. He was Tel. (787) 772-7388 a multitude of proposals to en- awarded a second Silver Star for gallantry during the Battle of the Tel. (787) 772-7313 hance and improve the training, morale and readiness of non- Bulge in December 1944, while commissioned officers across serving as a platoon sergeant. the Army As sergeant major of the Physical Address: • Recommending the Sergeants Army, Wooldridge traveled #50 Carr. #165 Major Academy • Recommending the command wherever Soldiers were sta- tioned to listen to their concerns Guaynabo P.R., 00968 sergeant major program while strengthening and pre- • Recommending the standard- serving the rich history of the ized NCO promotion process NCO Corps, “the backbone of Disabled American Veterans Annex located in After serving as sergeant ma- the Army.” Wooldridge died Monday jor of the Army, Wooldridge the Nuevo Dia Newspaper Building returned to Vietnam as sergeant night at Beaumont Army Medi- major of the Military Assistance cal Center on Fort Bliss, Texas, Command Vietnam, becoming and is survived by his wife Patty.
8March 2012 News The Sentinel of the Caribbean El Morro Fort BuchananUnfamiliarity with Post 9/11 GI Bill persists The Post 9/11 GI Bill pro- DoD) or statute from commit-vides financial support for ting to 4 additional years, andeducation and housing to in- agrees to serve for the maxi-dividuals with at least 90 days mum amount of time allowed.of aggregate service on or af- • Is not flagged for adverseter September 11, 2001, or action.individuals discharged with • Soldier must process ini-a service-connected disabil- tial transfer of benefits re-ity. You must have received quest before retirement.an honorable discharge to be Steps to Transfer Benefits:eligible for the Post-9/11 GI • Soldier must use CAC andBill. VA has the final determi- log into https://www.dmdc.nation regarding eligibility. osd.mil/TEB/ • Application: VA Form 22- • Soldier must read and ac-1990 on http://vabenefits.vba. knowledge all statements re-va.gov/vonapp/main.asP garding transfer –the transfer • Benefit Estimator: http:// request is an IRREVOCA-gibill.va.gov/CH33Estimator/ BLE decision to move from Am I eligible to transfer prior MGIB benefits into thebenefits? Any member of the Post 9/11 MGIB.Armed Forces (active duty or • Click eligible FamilySelected Reserve, Officer or Member (must be in DEERS)Enlisted) on or after August • List number of months • Enlisted Soldiers must no- main.asp • Monthly stipend not paid1, 2009, who is eligible for transferred for each Family tify their local Career Coun- Notes: to AD Soldiers, for ½ time orthe Post-9/11 GI Bill, and: Member (total is 36 months selors of the transfer request! • Tuition paid directly to in- less, or solely distance learn- • Has at least 6 years of ser- –can be shared among depen- • Officers must notify HRC stitution –not Soldier or Fam- ing programs.vice in the Armed Forces on dents but total cannot exceed / EIB (PDEEI@conus.army. ily Member. • Soldier AND Familythe transfer date and agrees to 36 months) milDSN221-0285) of the • Spouse can use benefits Member liable for overpay-serve 4 additional years in the • Enter start and end date transfer request! after Soldier has 6 years of ment reimbursements to VA.Armed Forces from the date for benefit (cannot be prior to • No confirmation is sent service. No monthly stipend Questions: Call VA @of election. 2009-08-01 –end date stops –you must check the TEB for AD Spouses. 1-888-442-4551 • Has at least 10 years of payments even if months re- site until it is updated to Ap- • Child can use benefits http://www.gibill.va.gov/service in the Armed Forces main) proved after Soldier has 10 years of GI_Bill_Info/CH33/Post-(active duty and/or selected • Verify REVOKE is un- • Once approved, the Fam- service. 911.htmreserve) on the date of elec- checked and hit Save -Repeat ily Member completes the VA • Service obligation begins http://www.gibill.va.gov/tion, is precluded by either steps for each Family Mem- Form 1990-E on http://va- date submitted –not approval GI_Bill_Info/CH33/Transfer.standard policy (service or ber benefits.vba.va.gov/vonapp/ date. htmWINDOW, From Page 6 Uniformed Code of Military NCOES course through their APFT scores, ers to use the ‘whole Sol- Justice, or UCMJ; a civilian With downsizing on the military and civilian educa- dier concept’ when assess-command channels to the conviction; or conviction by horizon, going forward, tion and display leadership ing Soldiers,” he said. “AndU.S. Army Human Resourc- court-martial Sluss said Soldiers should potential. Soldiers should be looking ates Command. • Two or more separate look at their military careers “It’s not enough just to the ‘roadmap’ in their chosen Commanders will also be proceedings under Article as serving on a team at any show up for work and do the career field. Every branchrequired to initiate a bar to 15, UCMJ, resulting in a level. bare minimum,” Sluss said. has them, and they are avail-re-enlistment under the di- finding of guilty by a field “Every year, there are new “We’re looking to keep able to download and review.rective for the following rea- grade commander during the members,” he explained. the best. Re-enlistment is a There are many career en-sons: Soldier’s current enlistment “You must continue to per- privilege, not a right,” Cole- hancing moves a Soldier can • Loss of primary military or period of service form and improve to remain man said. “A Soldier is fully make -- from drill sergeantoccupational specialty due to • A Soldier absent without in the starting lineup. Oth- qualified if they score a 180 school, air assault school orfault of the Soldier leave more than 96 hours erwise, someone my step up on their APFT, for example, civilian and military educa- • A Soldier denied Com- during the current enlist- and take your position. If I’m but if a Soldier is doing the tion. Make no mistake aboutmand List Integration for ment/re-enlistment period Specialist Sluss, I’m thinking minimum, they’re sitting on it, I sit on a lot of boards andpromotion by the unit com- Previously, Sluss said, a that I want to make sure that the fence. In the future, they these roadmaps tell a Soldiermander. mandatory bar to re-enlist- I’m doing everything I can might find themselves on the exactly what they need to • An incident involving the ment was initiated for three do to remain competitive. wrong side of the fence look- succeed.” Provisions of theuse of illegal drugs or alco- things: failing two consecu- If you do that, commanders ing in.” Coleman added that new retention directive willhol within the current enlist- tive Army Physical Fitness won’t have any questions it’s not just the APFT, marks- be incorporated into the nextment/re-enlistment period Tests, or APFTs, failure to about you when re-enlist- manship, military and civil- revision of AR 601-280 andresulting in an officially filed meet satisfactory progress ment time rolls around.” ian education, discipline or will be rescinded upon theletter of reprimand; a finding in the Army’s Weight Con- He said Soldiers should leadership potential. publication of the revisedof guilty under Article 15, trol Program or failure at an look to improve themselves “We encourage command- regulation.
El MorroFort Buchanan News The Sentinel of the Caribbean 9 March 2012From combat boots to dancing shoesBy Elizabeth M. Collins was puffy and red and the skin difficult days. There were a lotSoldiers Magazine that hadn’t melted away was of difficult nights. There was WASHINGTON -- By badly scarred and swollen. He a lot of anger, depression andnow, most of America has was even missing an ear. there was a lot of questioningheard of J.R. Martinez, the “I think that was really but I fought through it and Iveteran-turned-actor-turned- the first time that I was able stayed strong and I believeddancer who amazed “Dancing to take it in and say ‘Wow. and I had a smile throughoutwith the Stars” judges as he This is really bad,’” Martinez it all. I said to myself, ‘I amwaltzed, jived and tangoed his remembered. He feared he not going to be a victim. I amway into the hearts of viewers would never have a normal going to be a survivor.’”across the country. life, that no woman would Once he found a way to It wasn’t always that way. ever want cope withCpl. Jose Rene Martinez of him again. his own in-the 101st Airborne Division (Martinez is juries, Marti-was once indistinguishable now expect- His Humvee had hit a nez realizedfrom the thousands of other ing a baby landmine and he became that many ofyoung American Soldiers who with his trapped inside the burning the youngstreamed into Iraq in March long-time men and2003. girlfriend.) vehicle for 10 to 15 min- women who Like many of them, Mar- In his dark- utes. Conscious the entire c o n t i n u e dtinez was young -- only 19 est moments, time and in “unspeakable to arrive at-- naïve and inexperienced. he wished he pain,” Martinez thought he BAMC eachHe had enlisted for the usual had been left day, manyreasons: to get an education; for dead in was going to die. with injuriesto travel; to thank the coun- the desert. worse thantry that had given his single, Grueling his, wereimmigrant mother so much; days, weeks even moreand, just maybe, to “become and years of wound care and depressed than he had been.a man.” He didn’t know how therapy stretched ahead (to He began to visit them, laugh-or why he had ended up in a date, he’s had 33 surgeries). ing and joking, trying to raisewar zone. Surgeons attached skin grafts their spirits. After less than a month in and removed excessive scar Before he knew it, MartinezIraq, Martinez’s life changed tissue from Martinez’s face was talking about resilience Courtesy J.R. Martinezforever. and hands while painful phys- on “60 Minutes” and “Oprah.” would also be a way for mil- in Iraq in 2003, but I can con- His Humvee had hit a land- ical and occupational thera- Eventually he was out of the lions of people to hear Mar- tinue to serve in a differentmine and he became trapped pies helped him move his hospital and the Army. He be- tinez’s story. His newfound capacity and this is the way Iinside the burning vehicle arms again. came a full-time motivational fame would serve as a plat- do it, by talking to the troops,for 10 to 15 minutes. Con- Scar tissue tends to be very speaker, then landed a role form for him to advocate for talking to their families, try-scious the entire time and in thick and stiff, and it must be playing an injured veteran on thousands of other wounded ing to encourage them, trying“unspeakable pain,” Martinez carefully stretched, explained ABC’s now-cancelled soap, Soldiers and highlight some to inspire them, trying to lightthought he was going to die. Maj. David Admire, one of “All My Children.” Then, his of the wounded veterans’ that fire under their butts and He suffered burns over 40 Martinez’s many occupation- loyal fans began a campaign: charities he supports. say, ‘You know what? Youpercent of his body. When al therapists. Wouldn’t it be great if he went “Everything I get into, I can still do it man, and you’reMartinez awoke from a medi- “What we did initially was a on “Dancing with the Stars?” think about what impact is it not alone. There’s a lot of uscally induced coma in Brooke lot of wound care positioning, “I was always like, ‘Yeah, going to have?” said Marti- out there who feel your painArmy Medical Center at Fort a lot of splinting, a lot of get- that would be fun,’” he said. nez. “That’s the only thing I and understand what you’reSam Houston, Texas, a few ting his hands in the right po- “When news broke that ‘All have been doing for the past going through.’ (That’s) myweeks later, he was dazed, sition, because when the scar My Children’ was going off 8 years trying to pass on to way of saying I’m still one ofconfused and still in terrible forms, it contracts. It makes the air I thought to myself, wounded troops the under- the guys and I’m taking carepain. Where was he? Why the joints super-tight. You’ve ‘What about it?’” standing that ‘you too can.’ of my guys.”wouldn’t the nurses and doc- got to preserve the range of A friend called the “Danc- You can have an impact. Go Martinez even filled thetors let him look in a mirror? motion while it heals. So we ing with the Stars” casting out there and be a voice. Go “Dancing with the Stars” au-“What the hell is going on?” did a lot of splinting, a lot of department and a few months out there and show them what dience with veterans duringhe wondered. using his hands, getting used later they offered Martinez a it is we’re capable of doing. the week of Veterans Day, and He begged to see his face, to using his hands again. His role. Remembering that just “Being able to talk to the they loudly cheered him on.explaining that there was no mouth was burned. We did a eight years before, he had guys definitely helps me, Throughout his stint on theway he could come to terms lot of splinting in the mouth to nearly died, that he hadn’t and I don’t think they realize show, Martinez had to learnwith his injuries if he didn’t keep that mouth open because known how he would go on that,” he added later during a complicated dances like tan-know what they were. if it contracts, you can’t open with his life, Martinez found visit to his old unit, the 101st, gos, salsas and waltzes in five Nurses reluctantly brought your mouth. So that was a big himself choked up. The emo- at Fort Campbell, Ky. “It days or less, which meanthim a mirror and when he thing too, and his eyes.” tion he felt, he explained, is probably helps me more than six- or seven-hour rehearsalslooked at his reflection, Mar- “It wasn’t easy,” Martinez hard to describe. them. My military career wastinez saw a stranger. His face admitted. “There were a lot of “Dancing with the Stars” cut short because of my injury MARTINEZ Page 19
Meritorious S10 March 2012 http://www.flickr.com/photos/fortbuchanan_elmorro/ The Sentinel ofMSM, From Page 1 69. He said his son decided to action ended the life of six as a result of the economic join the Army in 2006 after of its Soldiers. Sgt. Ramos crisis hitting the island,” saidgreat credit himself, his unit losing his job. It was to be a Velázquez was wounded in his father.and the U.S. Army. He made new career he performed with the initial attack but refused Mr. Ramos added with tearsthe ultimate sacrifice on May great pride. Sgt. Ramos was evacuation so he could help in his eyes, “I am very proud26, 2011 when he died of equipped, experienced, com- his follow Soldiers. Accord- of him and what he did in de-wounds suffered when insur- mitted, and highly trained to ing to the elder Ramos, Sgt. fense of democracy and free-gents attacked his unit with an excel in his Warrior profes- Ramos Velázquez’s com- dom.” “He died for what heimprovised explosive device sion. Sgt. Ramos did what he mander at the time credits believed in, with his boots on,in Kandahar province, Af- was trained to do. At the time him with saving his life. For as he wanted.”ghanistan. of his death he was assigned to his actions, he was awarded Sgt. Louie A. Ramos Ve- The medal was presented the 4th Battalion, 101st Avia- the Bronze Star and the Purple lázquez was born in New Yorkby Col. John D. Cushman, tion Regiment, 159th Combat Heart Medal. City but was raised in Camuy,Fort Buchanan garrison com- Aviation Brigade, 101st Air- When Luis Ramos Sr. was Puerto Rico and entered themander, and Command Sgt. borne Division (Air Assault), asked to define the life of his Army at the San Juan EntryMaj. Derrick T. Simpson, Fort Campbell, Ky. son, he was quick to answer Processing Station on Decem-garrison command sergeant On the day of the attack that his son was an excellent ber 27, 2006. He was then Col. John D. Cushman, commandermajor. Col. Cushman offered which took his life insurgents and responsible man. “To sent to Fort Sill in Oklahoma father of Sgt. Louie Ramos Velázqu Mirina Martinez, the elder Ramos’his most sincere and deepest targeted his unit and detonat- overcome adversity and pro- to attend military basic train- stands near for support.condolences to the family and ed an improvised explosive vide a quality of life for his ing.acknowledged that it was a device. The date was a tragic family, Louie decided to join Following completion of His first deployment wdifficult time for them. “Sgt. one for the US Army and the the Army after losing his job basic training, Sgt. Ramos to Afghanistan in 2008 wiRamos served with honor 4th Battalion, since enemy with a local finance institution Velázquez attended the ad- Company F, 4th Battaliand distinction; we are here vanced individual training 101st Aviation Regimentfor you as a family,” said at Fort Sam Houston in San Fort Campbell, Kentucky asCushman, emphasizing Fort Antonio, where he became a Trauma Specialist and ComBuchanan’s commitment to combat medic. bat Medic.supporting Soldiers and theirfamilies. In addition to Sgt. RamosVelázquez’s father, also pres-ent were Mrs. Mirina Mar-tinez, step-mother, his sisterLeza Ramos and his grandfa-ther Antonio Ramos. According to his father,Sgt. Ramos Velázquez wascut from a Warrior’s cloth.The elder Ramos is a VietnamVeteran who saw combat ser- Luis Ramos speaks about his son while his wife and the step-mother of Sgt.vice in Vietnam from 1968 to Louie Ramos Velázquez, Mirina Martinez stands near for support. From Left: Leza Ramos the sister of Sgt. Louie Ramos Velázquez, Mirina Mar nator Angel Castro, Sgt. Ramos’ grandfather Antonio Ramos.
Service Medal the Caribbean http://www.flickr.com/photos/fortbuchanan_elmorro/ El Morro Fort Buchanan 11 r of Fort Buchanan, presents Luis Ramos theuez with the Meritorious Service Medal while wife and the step-mother of Sgt. Ramos,was In February 2011 he was ith once again called upon to de-ion ploy to Afghanistan in support at of Operation Enduring Free- sa dom XI. He is survived by his m- wife Jesenia and three chil- dren Louie, Pedro and Sheila. Sgt. Louie Ramos Velázquez made the ultimate sacrifice on May 26, 2011 when he died of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device in Kandahar province, Afghanistan. According to Sgt. Ramos’ father Luis Ramos, Sgt. Ramos commander at the time credits him with saving his life. For his actions, he was awarded the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart Medal. The Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army, retired Maj. Gen. Félix A. Santoni was among the distinguished guests who attended the award ceremony honoring the military service of Sgt. Louie Ramos Velázquez who was rtinez, step-mother, Fort Buchanan Survivor Outreach Services Support Coordi- killed in action in Afghanistan May 26, 2011.