(Rick Vasquez/Stars and Stripes)

Washington, D.C., March 18, 2014: President Barack Obama talks about Medal of Honor recipients Staff Sgt. Melvin Morris, Sgt. 1st Class Jose Rodela and Spc. Santiago J. Erevia at the White House. The president honored 24 Hispanic, Jewish and Black men who had been denied the nation’s highest commendation for combat valor.

Because of the politics and prejudices of earlier decades, doubt has long lingered over whether Hispanic-Americans or Jewish-Americans had been given equal consideration with Anglo-Americans for the Medal of Honor. After Army researchers reviewed some 6,500 Distinguished Service Cross awards, they found 19 Jewish and Hispanic soldiers who deserved the highest honor, along with five soldiers of other backgrounds.

Read Stars and Stripes’ story highlighting a few of the recipients here.

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