DoD Celebrates National Hispanic Heritage Month
From Sept. 15 – Oct.15, the Department of Defense joins the nation in celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month. During this time, the department and the nation honor the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. The start of National Hispanic Heritage Month also marks the anniversary of independence for Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. The independence of Mexico and Chile are observed shortly thereafter, on Sept.16 and Sept. 18, respectively.
The theme of this year’s observance, “Hispanic Americans: Energizing our Nation’s Diversity,” harkens to the vibrant and thriving contributions of Hispanics to our nation across the centuries. The celebration seeks to draw attention to the diversity and countless contributions Hispanics continue to make to enrich the United States and strengthen the defense of our nation.
The department will honor National Hispanic Heritage Month with programs and activities at installations around the world. The Pentagon will host a ceremony to present a temporary display, designed and owned by the Hispanic Medal of Honor Society, which features Hispanic Medal of Honor recipients. The society promotes the awareness of the patriotism, gratitude, and loyalty of Hispanics in the United States. The ceremony will be held in the Pentagon on the second floor in corridor 2A.2.5 on Friday, Sept.18 at 2 p.m.
Other Hispanic Medal of Honor displays around the National Capital Region include one titled, “Return with Honor,” which illustrates the story of Commander Everett Alvarez Jr., the first American pilot shot down over North Vietnam. “Return with Honor” will be featured at the Navy Yard. A third display entitled “Justice for my People” showcases the story of Dr. Hector P. Garcia, the first civil rights activist and founder of the American G.I. Forum will be displayed at Fort Belvoir in Building 1458.
The department is committed to honoring and recognizing the Hispanic Americans that strengthen the fabric of our country and serve in defense of the values we hold dear. All department personnel are encouraged to recognize the immeasurable contributions made by Hispanic Americans and to celebrate the diversity of our workforce. Please visit the Hispanic Heritage Month web special to learn more about Hispanic service across the Total Force: http://www.defense.gov/News/Special-Reports/0915_hispanic-heritage.