Finally a Borinqueneers Avenue in Philly
Its been a long wait but it was worth it.
State Representative Angel Cruz applauded the General Assembly of Pennsylvania for enacting House Bill 1652 which was signed into law to designate a portion of Whitaker Avenue, from its intersection with Roosevelt Boulevard to the point where it meets East Erie Avenue in Philadelphia, as the 65th Infantry “Borinqueneers” Avenue.
To officially celebrate the historical moment, a ribbon cutting ceremony will be held on Nov. 7 at the Erie & Whitaker Avenues intersection at 12 p.m. Government dignitaries, community leaders, as well as Post 840 and Puerto Rican veterans from the Korean Conflict will be joining Cruz.
According to George Perez and Juvencio Gonzalez, US Marines, Legislative Assistants, Members of the CGM National Initiative and Latin American Post 840 of the American Legion, they can’t wait for the 65th Regiment Borinqueneer survivors to celebrate the ribbon cutting ceremony.
In their statement Perez and Gonzalez wrote: “For their memories to be captured by the audience and to be honored into the annals of our rich Pennsylvanian History. Thank you Rep. Cruz and all legislators for adding this beacon of light to our Community.”
The 65th Infantry Regiment was a Puerto Rican regiment of the United States Army which participated in World War I, World War II, and the Korean War. The Borinqueneers is a nickname for the regiment of the 3rd Division in the US Army, an all-volunteer Puerto Rican unit.
The regiment won four Distinguished Service Crosses and 125 Silver Stars, and was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation and the Greek Gold Medal for Bravery for its service.
“I deeply want to thank my fellow legislators for supporting HB 1652, and the governor for signing it into law. We have enacted a law that will serve as a daily reminder to our constituents of the military contributions to the fabric of our country by Puerto Rican soldiers who gave their lives for our freedom,” Cruz said. “I also want to thank Congressman Bob Brady for cosponsoring the HR 1726 Bill – honoring the 65th Infantry Regiment with the Congressional Gold Medal.”
More than 62,000 Puerto Ricans joined the military during World War II and more than 43,000 Puerto Ricans served in the Korean War. While in Korea, the Borinqueneers served in nine separate military campaigns, giving their lives to serve their country.
“This dedication will serve as a permanent daily reminder to thousands of Philadelphians of the sacrifices made by the Borinqueneers, their families and their communities, “ said State Sen. Mike Stack, who played a key role in convincing federal lawmakers to award the Congressional Gold Medal to the regiment. “Thanks to Representative Cruz for his effort in getting this bill through the legislature.”