All Star Boxing Returns to Palm Bay, Honors Highly Decorated Military Veteran
By Space Coast Daily // February 6, 2016
Boxeo Telemundo To Televise Bouts
BREVARD COUNTY • PALM BAY, FLORIDA – On Friday, February 26, All Star Boxing will make its return to Palm Bay, Florida.
The Greater Palm Bay Chamber of Commerce has once again partnered with Telemundo and All Star Boxing to bring another major World Boxing Organization (WBO) sanctioned boxing night to Brevard County.
During the event, All Star Boxing will honor our nation’s military veterans with a tribute to 92-year-old Arcadio Santiago-Rodriguez, a highly decorated World War II, Korean and Vietnam war combat soldier and Palm Bay resident who fought as a member of the famed 65th Infantry Regiment known as the Borinqueneers.
“I applaud the continued efforts of the Greater Palm Bay Chamber of Commerce and Telemundo to make this exciting event an annual attraction in Palm Bay,” said Congressman Bill Posey.
“Events such as this attract visitors from around the world, provide a boost to local businesses, and help promote our area as a premier travel destination.
“Furthermore, I commend All Star Boxing for honoring Arcadio Santiago-Rodriguez, a true American fighter and war hero. We owe our nation’s military veterans and their families a great debt of gratitude for their service and sacrifices. Without the courage and dedication of our service members, it would not be possible to hold on to our freedoms throughout the years.”
The Greater Palm Bay Chamber of Commerce will partner with All Star Boxing to bring boxing back to Palm Bay. The impact to the region is profound both economically and through increased visibility of the region through the televised boxing matches.
“We are also thrilled to honor Arcadio Santiago-Rodriguez, a 92-year-old Palm Bay resident who earned two Silver Stars, two Bronze Stars and the Purple Heart,” said Nancy Peltonen, President and CEO of the Greater Palm Bay Chamber of Commerce.
“We are elated to come back to Palm Bay. Not only are we able to provide quality entertainment to the residents of Brevard County, but we also provide a profound economic impact producing a worldwide event locally,” said Ruben De Jesus, Director of Operations for All Star Boxing, Inc.
“Also, because of our freedom to be able to bring such an event granted to us by the men and women who have served and sometimes paid the ultimate sacrifice, that evening we are honoring a 92-year-old Borinquineer of the 65th Infantry Regiment – Arcadio Santiago-Rodriquez – for service to this great country.”
Posey Introduces Legislation To Honor ‘Borinqueneers’
The “Borinqueneers” were created by Congress in 1898 as an all-Puerto Rican segregated unit, and is credited with the final battalion-sized bayonet assault in U.S. Army history.
In early 1951, while fighting in Korea, two battalions of the 65th fixed bayonets and charged straight up hill toward the enemy, over running them and overtaking the enemy’s strategic position.
In September 1944, the 65th Infantry landed in France and was committed to action on the Maritime Alps at Peira Cava and relieved the 2nd Battalion of the 442nd Infantry Regiment – a regiment which was made up of Japanese Americans.
Called upon to serve in World War I, World War II, and especially the Korean War, the Borinqueneers have consistently shown exceptional and unyielding valor on the battlefield despite the hardships they lived under such as ethnic discrimination.
During Korea, the Borinqueneers were awarded 10 Distinguished Service Crosses, 256 Silver Stars, 606 Bronze Stars, and 2,771 Purple Hearts. Deaths in Korea among the Borinqueneers numbered 750 men. Of these, over 100 are still listed as Missing in Action. They never came home.
As a unit, they earned a Presidential Unit Citation, a Meritorious Unit Commendation and two Republic of Korea Unit Citations, including personal praise from General Douglas MacArthur when they were called to the front lines of the Korean War.
‘BRILLIANT RECORD OF HEROISM’
“The Puerto Ricans forming the ranks of the gallant 65th Infantry give daily proof on the battlefields of Korea of their courage, determination and resolute will to victory, their invincible loyalty to the United States and their fervent devotion to those immutable principles of human relations which the Americans of the Continent and of Puerto Rico have in common,” said MacArthur said of the Borinqueneers.
“They are writing a brilliant record of heroism in battle and I am indeed proud to have them under my command. I wish that we could count on many more like them.”
“It’s important to always honor our veterans at every opportunity we can,” said Sam Rodriguez, CEO of Borinqueneers Congressional Gold Medal Ceremony National Committee.
“Arcadio Santiago-Rodriguez is one of the highest decorated veterans that served in the ranks of the 65th Infantry Regiment known as the Borinqueneers. I want to thank All Star Boxing, and all their fans, the Palm Bay Chamber, Telemundo, and Congressmen Bill Posey for showing their love to the Borinqueneers.”
The event begins at 8 p.m. and will be telecast live nationally and through four continents worldwide by Telemundo.
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