Silvestre Santana Herrera, SGT

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Silvestre Santana Herrera, SGT

Birthdate: (90)
Birthplace: Camargo, Chihuahua Municipality, Chihuahua, Mexico
Death: November 26, 2007 (90)
Glendale, AZ, USA
Place of Burial: Glendale, AZ, USA
Occupation: Company E, 142d Infantry, 36th Infantry Division
Managed by: Ashley Odell
Last Updated:

About Silvestre Santana Herrera, SGT

Silvestre Santana Herrera (July 17, 1917 – November 26, 2007) was a member of the United States Army of Hispanic heritage who received the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions during World War II in Mertzwiller, France. His one-man charge on an enemy stronghold resulted in his single-handed capture of eight enemy soldiers. At the time of his death he was the only living person authorized to wear both the Medal of Honor and Mexico's Order of Military Merit (first class). The City of Phoenix officially renamed the portion of 3rd Street that runs from Indian School Road North into the park, "S. Herrera Way". Silvestre Herrera was an Arizona "legend".

Medal of Honor citation

Silvestre S. Herrera

Rank and organization:Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company E, 142d Infantry, 36th Infantry Division.

Place and date:Near Mertzwiller, France, March 15, 1945.

Entered service at:Phoenix, Arizona

G.O. No.: 75, September 5, 1945.


He advanced with a platoon along a wooded road until stopped by heavy enemy machinegun fire. As the rest of the unit took cover, he made a 1-man frontal assault on a strongpoint and captured 8 enemy soldiers. When the platoon resumed its advance and was subjected to fire from a second emplacement beyond an extensive minefield, Pvt. Herrera again moved forward, disregarding the danger of exploding mines, to attack the position. He stepped on a mine and had both feet severed but, despite intense pain and unchecked loss of blood, he pinned down the enemy with accurate rifle fire while a friendly squad captured the enemy gun by skirting the minefield and rushing in from the flank. The magnificent courage, extraordinary heroism, and willing self-sacrifice displayed by Pvt. Herrera resulted in the capture of 2 enemy strongpoints and the taking of 8 prisoners

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Silvestre Santana Herrera, SGT's Timeline

July 17, 1917
Chihuahua Municipality, Chihuahua, Mexico
November 26, 2007
Age 90
Glendale, AZ, USA
Glendale, AZ, USA