By Staff Sgt. Marimar Rivera MedinaSeptember 15, 2022
BOLESŁAWIEC, Poland – The U.S. Army is composed of various groups; among these is the Hispanic American population, which comprises 16% of all active-duty military, according to a 2019 report by the Congressional Research Service.
For Hispanic American service members, Hispanic Heritage month is a chance to honor their heritage and learn about their contributions to our nation's history.
“I think diversity is important because it creates the dynamics for our force to be multidimensional, as opposed to being one dimensional with one type of soldier,” said U.S. Army Sgt. Agustín Montañez, a public affairs mass communications sergeant assigned to the 113th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment, 101st Troop Command, Puerto Rico Army National Guard. “The fact that we are from many different places from all across the world and can join the United States Army is a great thing.”
Since 1988, the U.S. has celebrated Hispanic Heritage month from September 15th to October 15th. It is a chance to recognize the contributions and influence of Hispanic Americans to the history, culture, and achievements of the United States. It was established as Hispanic Heritage Week by President Lynden B. Johnson in 1968. It was expanded to a month in 1988 by President Ronald Reagan. September 15th became the starting point for the commemoration because it is the anniversary of the “Cry of Dolores,” which marked the start of the Mexican War of Independence and thus resulted in independence for the New Spain Colony, today known as the nations of Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Honduras, and Nicaragua.
It’s been nearly 250 years since the first Hispanic soldiers marched into battle during the Revolutionary War. Hispanic-Americans have played a pivotal role in the U.S. Armed Forces in the past two centuries, serving in all military branches and bravely fighting in every war since. Sixty people of Hispanic heritage have received the Medal of Honor. As of July 2021, nearly 18 percent of all the components of the U.S. military were of Latino or Hispanic origin, according to the Department of Defense, and continue to be a solid contributing force in our nation’s military history.
“It’s important for us, as Hispanics, to represent our culture and to show that not only we’re a part of the military, but also it’s important for us to distinguish ourselves as Soldiers and Latin-Americans,” said Spc. Hassani Ribera, a public affairs mass communications sergeant assigned to the 113th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment, 101st Troop Command, Puerto Rico Army National Guard, and a Florida, Puerto Rico, native. “It makes me feel proud to serve as a Soldier, but also to celebrate our particular month in the year for us, the Latin culture.”

Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Military
Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Military
Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Military
Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Military
Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Military
Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Military

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