THE RARE BREED
Recognizing Area Veterans Of World War II
Gatica Brothers Earned 7 Bronze Stars Between Them
Herman Gatica (left) and brother, Leon.
To lead-off the Palacios Beacon's series of articles recognizing and to salure the living veterans of World War II in and from the Palacios area, the honor goes to the Gatica brothers, Leon, 84, and Herman, 80, of Palacios. Their information was the first received for this series.
Sons of Antonio and Simona Gatica, both were born in Matagorda--Leon on April 11, 1918; Herman on May 3, 1922.
LEON C. GATICA Leon was a 23-year-old fisherman in Palacios when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. He entered the U.S. Army as a private on March 7, 1942 at Fort Sam Houston.
Leon was a canoneer in the Army, with overseas service at Tunisia, Naples, Foggin, Rome, Arno, the Rhineland and Central Europe.
He was awarded the European-African-Middle Eastern (EAME) Campaign Medal with five Bronze Stars and also the Good Conduct Medal. Leon received his honorable discharge at Fort Sam Houston on Oct. 10, 1945.
HERMAN C. GATICA, SR. Herman was a 19-year-old fisherman at the time of Pearl Harbor in 1941. He entered service with the U.S. Army at Houston on Nov. 21, 1942.
A rifleman in the Army, Herman was in the American Theatre Campaign, with service in the Rhineland and Central Europe.
Herman was awarded the American Theater Campaign Medal, EAME Campaign Medal with two Bronze Stars, Good Conduct Medal and the World War II Victory Medal.
He received his honorable discharge from the Army on Feb. 24, 1946 at Camp Fannin, Texas.
Herman and his wife, Victoria, whom he met in Palacios around 1947, are the parents of a son, Herman Gatica, Jr. of Palacios; have three grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
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