Monday, May 26, 2008

Untold stories of Mexican-American WWII veterans.
By San Gabriel Valley Tribue.

Much debate has been raised over whether the Latino contribution to World War II has been overlooked or ignored by modern-day media.

WHITTIER - His mission was to help about two dozen comrades herding 20,000 armed German soldiers who surrendered during World War II.

At first, David Alcala thought it was crazy.
But it wasn't long before he was driving his jeep up and down the massive line of enemy forces as they marched on the banks of the Loire River in September 1944 toward a prisoner camp.

The Whittier resident and his fellow soldiers were ordered to make sure the captive Germans marched without incident.

"I was hoping they wouldn't (turn on us)" the 86-year-old said. "If anything would have started, I wouldn't be here."

Alcala's unit, the Intelligence and Reconnaissance Platoon of the Army's 329th Infantry Regiment, assisted in what is widely considered the largest mass surrender during the war. They were featured on an episode of the popular 1950s television show, "This is Your Life," with host Ralph Edwards.

Alcala was the only Mexican-American in the platoon. Continue reading here:

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