Lawmakers Request Fort Hood Name Change to Honor Four-Star General Richard E. Cavazos

Lead Photo: Photo by Drew Anthony Smith/Getty Images
Photo by Drew Anthony Smith/Getty Images
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The Congressional Hispanic Caucus recently made a request to U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and a bipartisan committee tasked to remove Confederate symbols and names from U.S. military assets, according to NBC News.

Lawmakers are asking the committee to rename Texas military base Fort Hood after late Gen. Richard E. Cavazos, the first Mexican American four-star general. Cavazos, who died in 2017, reached the prestigious rank in 1982. Fort Hood is named after Confederate General John Bell Hood.

“[Cavazos] overcame racism and other obstacles through his 33 years of service and eventually led the U.S. Army Forces Command, making him one of the highest-ranked Army officials of his time,” read a letter that the caucus sent Austin and the committee.

During the Korean and Vietnam wars, Cavazos earned the Silver Star and the Distinguished Service Cross for leading the 65th Infantry Regiment, AKA “The Borinqueneers,” a Puerto Rican military unit of the United States Army. His military honors didn’t end there. He also earned the Distinguished Service Cross for commanding the 1st Battalion in Vietnam and taking on rounds from the enemy.

In another letter sent to the committee earlier this year, the caucus explained why their suggestions to rename military bases was an important step in recognizing the history of discrimination that has taken place in the military. This racism, they say, is a reason more people of color have not earned higher ranks.

“For far too long, the contributions of Latinos, Latinas, and especially Afro-Latinos have been largely overlooked in our country,” the letter stated.

Along with Fort Hood, the caucus has its sights set on several other bases they believe should be renamed for Latinos. This includes renaming Fort Bragg in North Carolina after Medal of Honor winner Master Sgt. Roy Benavidez, a native of Texas who fought in Vietnam.