USAA Employee, Grace F., senior employee relations advisor, honors her late father, Lucian A., and his legacy as a Mexican American service member who served our nation as a U.S. Army Staff Sergeant.
One of 12 children in a large Mexican American family in Port Arthur, Texas, Lucian A. went on to earn a Medal of Honor for his heroism in World War II, becoming among the dozens of Hispanics who have earned the highest and most prestigious military decoration.
Today, his daughter, Grace F., senior employee relations advisor, honors her father and his legacy as a Mexican American service member who served our nation as a U.S. Army Staff Sergeant.
“He went into the fire of three enemy machine gun nests, and he knocked out all three machine gun nests with a grenade and was able to open up the supply line," explains Grace.
While Lucian's dedication and service to his country was evident on the battlefield, honor was a tenet of his upbringing, too.
“He had to quit high school to help bring in an income for the rest of his brothers and sisters," says Grace. “Even when my father was married to my mother, he still sent money home to his mom."
Grace says her family's Hispanic roots and culture instill a sense of pride and dignity. This was evident when Grace's father felt called to act as an advocate for his fellow Mexican American service members at the Veterans Administration (VA) to ensure fair treatment. Eventually, he went on to work for the VA for 42 years.
“If you get the call to serve, you need to serve with strength, pride and with courage," says Grace. “Remember your family name because together we're going to make things better and together we'll have a legacy we can all share in. That's part of who my father is, was and, in my heart, continues to be."