MY FREE EXPRESSION. Veterans Day, Semper Fi

Written by Fernando Milanés

15 de noviembre de 2022

(Felix Sosa-Camejo) came here, to Miami, as a 20-year-old refugee from Castro’s regime and enlisted in the Army in 1963. Serving for five years, Captain Sosa-Camejo earned 12 citations, including the Bronze Star, three Silver Stars and two Purple Hearts. On February 13, 1968, in the heat of the Tet Offensive on the streets of Hue, his platoon was pinned down by enemy fire and unable to reach a wounded comrade. With disregard for his safety, Captain Sosa-Camejo ran through the intense enemy fire and pulled the wounded man to safety. This action would earn Captain Sosa-Camejo his second Bronze Star and would cost him his life.

Senate Committee of Armed Services, 2006

Today we remember the many that risked life or limb in order to allow the rest of us the opportunity to enjoy ours.    

Kids, look at yourself in a mirror and look at your friends having a “great” time. Then at least join them in remembering the fact that many of your age’s lives were cut short because they participated in a military action for love of Country, with little understanding of the why. 

The least we can do is to take time off pleasures and give thanks!  And while doing this, also pray for the “living dead”, or war-torn Vets that will forever be tortured by the horrors of seen friends killed and killing others.  

Instead of using this day for any personal pleasure, why don’t you visit your nearest VA Hospital and give thanks to the ones that remain alive.  

They will be forever grateful, and the experience will always stay as part of your soul. I know!   

I spent 20 years of my life joining many others that were trying to help these magnificent human beings.    

In this age of division, jealousy, and anger they continued, even though their suffering, to be positive, grieving for their lost comrades, but with continued pride for their actions.  

Let us not forget the many Cubans that came to our country to escape communism and then volunteered to fight that evil in Vietnam, many losing their lives, or suffering physical and mental injuries.    

After the first military attempt in the failed Bay of Pigs, when the promised air cover never materialized and we ran out of ammunition, the fighters returning from prison were offered to join the US Armed Forces to form a special brigade that was supposed to return to fight in Cuba against the Castro tyrants.    

I decided against joining, but many of my friends did, some leaving after one year when the original intent was not met, but many others remaining and subsequently fought in Vietnam.   

Most of them had been members of the Brigade 2506, which made my small service to them in their need for medical help one of immense satisfaction.    

One of the young men that went from our brigade to Vietnam and demonstrated great dedication and courage in battle was Felix Sosa Camejo who was posthumously honored as noted above.   

His sacrifice will serve as a memory of those Cubans who fought, died, were injured, or continued successful careers in our military.

Today we honor thee!

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