Richard Geissler

By Joshua Avelar

For Richard Geissler Jr., a U.S. Army veteran who became a conscientious objector during the Vietnam War, passion for community activism shaped his life despite the many different communities he served and the overbearing obstacles he faced.

Jack Greenberg

By Samantha Gallion

Jack Greenberg had been working with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People for 17 years in 1966, when he received repeated requests from Mexican Americans and Native Americans.

“We had a great deal of success with civil rights cases, and people who we ordinarily didn’t represent came to us asking us to represent them,” Greenberg said.

Harold Valderas

By Courtney Mahaffey

On Dec. 7, 1941, Harold Valderas, then a senior at George Washington High School in New York City, was doing his homework while listening to the radio when he heard the report about Pearl Harbor.

"Little did I realize, before long, I'd be in the service myself," Valderas said.

In the spring of 1942, at the age of 18, Valderas dropped out of high school early to enlist in the Army Air Corp Cadet Program. (There wasn’t a draft for 18- year-olds at the time.)

Frank Bonilla

By Anne Quach

Frank Bonilla planned to attend college after finishing high school, but within two weeks of graduation, he was drafted into the Army to fight in World War II.

Joseph Unanue

By Chris Nay

Heading toward combat in the decisive Battle of the Bulge, a brush with death came early for Joseph Unanue. On his first day in the European Theater, his sergeant lay dead and, as the next in command, Unanue would have to save his men from the same fate.

Santos Deliz

By Chris Nay

Santos Deliz and a few other men from his unit crept into the abandoned house in Germany, seeking refuge and respite from battle. After a quiet night, Deliz awoke with a shock.

"It was too dark; we couldn't see...when I woke up there were five dead Germans around me." uttered Deliz with a resonating Brooklyn accent. "The explosion of a shell must have killed them."

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