The City of Tampa honored a Tampa-born Marine to kick off National Hispanic Heritage Month.
Mayor Jane Castor, Councilman Luis Viera and Judge E.J. Salcines were on-hand with local leaders for the event. National Hispanic Heritage Month will run from September 15-October 15, 2020. The ceremony honors U.S. Marine First Lieutenant Baldomero Lopez who posthumously received the Medal of Honor for his actions during the Korean War. Lopez was born in Tampa, graduated from Hillsborough High School, and went on to the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. In 1947, he became a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps. Volunteering for duty in Korea, he was promoted to First Lieutenant.
In 1950, First Lieutenant Baldomero Lopez led his men of Company A, First Battalion, Fifth Marines, First Marine Division. During the invasion of the amphibious invasion of Inchon on September 15, Lopez attempted to throw a grenade into an enemy bunker but was struck by machine-gun fire in his chest and shoulder, knocking the grenade from his hand. To protect his men, he sacrificed himself by shielding the blast by pulling the grenade beneath him. A year later, Baldomero Lopez was awarded the Medal of Honor.
[Source: News Channel 8]