Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Memorial Day Celebration Honoring Medal Of Honor Recepient LCPL Emilio DeLaGarza

Looking for something to do on Memorial Day in Northwest Indiana? Join us as we memorialize the life and sacrifice of Medal Of Honor Recipient Emilio DeLaGarza!

This is quite a story. A few years back we began working to erect a memorial to honor Emilio's accomplishments. We raised funds and actually had a granite piece created by the same folks (Rogan Granite, Lynwood, Illinois) who created the Vietnam Wall in Washington DC. Well, over the course of the project, we have come to know the DeLaGarza family and through much research, were able to locate the actual Navy Corpsman who worked on Emilio during the battle!

His name is Corpsman Sam Lyles, he currently lives just outside of Birmingham, Alabama and he is joining us for the dedication and, for the first time, will be meeting Emilio's family. This event is what Memorial Day is all about!

When: Monday, May 30, 2011 11:30 am (Program will last approximately 50 minutes)

Where: Veteran’s Memorial, 9710 Calumet Avenue, Munster, Indiana, (2.5 mi South on Calumet from 80/94)

Event Description: The Calumet Detachment of the Marine Corps League is honoring Lance Corporal Emilio DeLaGarza who earned the Medal Of Honor in Vietnam. This event is being marked by the installation of a monument in his honor as well as a ceremony in which we are introducing the ACTUAL NAVY CORPSMAN who was with and attempted to save the life of Emilio Delagarza at the time of the incident. The DeLagarza family currently resides in Chicago, Illinois and Hammond, Indiana and have never met the Corpsman, Mr. Sam Lyles, who is travelling from Birmingham, Alabama to take part in the ceremony.

Medal Of Honor Citation:For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a machine gunner with Company E, Second Battalion, First Marines, First Marine Division, in the Republic of Vietnam on April 11, 1970. Returning with his squad from a night ambush operation, Lance Corporal De La Garza joined his Platoon commander and another Marine in searching for two enemy soldiers who had been observed fleeing for cover toward a small pond. Moments later, he located one of the enemy soldiers hiding among the reeds and brush. As the three Marines attempted to remove the resisting soldier from the pond, Lance Corporal De La Garza observed him pull the pin on a grenade. Shouting a warning, Lance Corporal De La Garza placed himself between the other two Marines and the ensuing blast from the grenade, thereby saving the lives of his comrades at the sacrifice of his own. By his prompt and decisive action, and his great personal valor in the face of almost certain death, Lance Corporal De La Garza upheld and further enhanced the finest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.

Supporting Links:
LCPL Emilio DeLaGarza Wiki page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emilio_A._De_La_Garza
Munster Memorial Website http://www.communityveteransmemorial.org
Calumet Detachment website: http://www.indianamarines.com

Persons in attendance:Mr. Sam Lyles, former Navy Corpsman who attempted to save the life of Emilio DeLaGarza
Ms. Renee Lugo and family, Daughter and family of LCPL Emilio DeLaGarza
Portage High School Marine Corps JROTC
Congressman Pete Visclosky
Local Veterans and community residents

Contact Information: Commandant Bill Schroeder, 219-789-2722 (cell), Bill@IndianaMarines.com

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