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* Fugitive Watch Salutes Medal of Honor Recipient Alejandro R. Ruiz Sr. Who Died Friday-Watch Video Here

Fugitive Watch Salutes World War Two Medal of Honor Recipient Alejandro R. Ruiz Sr. 85 years old, who died Monday November 23, 2009 of heart failure. Private First Class Alejandro R. Ruiz (June 26, 1923 – November 20, 2009) was a former United States Army soldier who was awarded the Medal of Honor, the United States’ highest military decoration, for his actions in the Battle of Okinawa during World War II.  Ruiz was born and raised in Loving, New Mexico and enlisted in the United States Army, in the town of Carlsbad, New Mexico, upon the outbreak of World War II. He was assigned to the U.S. 27th Infantry Division after completing basic training

During World War II, the conquest of the Japanese island of Okinawa was considered vital for the Allied Forces as a step towards an invasion of the Japanese mainland. The invasion (codenamed Operation Iceberg) was the largest amphibious operation of the Pacific war, and involved units of the US Tenth Army, commanded by Lieutenant General Simon Bolivar Buckner, Jr.

On April 28, 1945, PFC Ruiz’s unit was pinned down by machine gun fire coming from a camouflaged Japanese pillboxand was unable to advance to its assigned objective. Ruiz, on his own initiative, charged the pillbox under a hail of machine gun fire. On his second attempt, he was able to neutralize the pillbox by killing all of its occupants. For his actions he was awarded the Medal of Honor. On June 26, 1946, President Harry Truman presented Ruiz with the Medal of Honor in a ceremony held at the White House.  Ruiz remained in the Army for 16 more years and even though he was exempt from having to fight in combat again he fought for his country again in the Korean war.

Official Medal of Honor Citation

ALEJANDRO R. RUIZ

Citation: When his unit was stopped by a skillfully camouflaged enemy pillbox, he displayed conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty. His squad, suddenly brought under a hail of machinegun fire and a vicious grenade attack, was pinned down. Jumping to his feet, Pfc. Ruiz seized an automatic rifle and lunged through the flying grenades and rifle and automatic fire for the top of the emplacement. When an enemy soldier charged him, his rifle jammed. Undaunted, Pfc. Ruiz whirled on his assailant and clubbed him down. Then he ran back through bullets and grenades, seized more ammunition and another automatic rifle, and again made for the pillbox. Enemy fire now was concentrated on him, but he charged on, miraculously reaching the position, and in plain view he climbed to the top. Leaping from one opening to another, he sent burst after burst into the pillbox, killing 12 of the enemy and completely destroying the position. Pfc. Ruiz’s heroic conduct, in the face of overwhelming odds, saved the lives of many comrades and eliminated an obstacle that long would have checked his unit’s advance.

Ruiz resided in Visalia, California and actively participated in activities honoring Medal of Honor recipients. On November 20, 2009, Ruiz passed away. The town of Visalia has honored Ruiz by naming the “Alejandro R. Ruiz Sr. Park” after him, located at North Burke Street and Buena Vista Street.

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  • IT would be very nice if thay made a movie about him. I would like Clinte Eastwood to make thay move.

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