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Mexican-American War Veterans Reflect on Their Service

Tony Vizcarrondo Jr..jpg

During Hispanic Heritage Month, AARP presented two men who sacrificed to serve our country. Both Afghan war veterans of Latino origin, Tony Vizcarrondo and Jim Saenz, reflect on their military career, time in Afghanistan and what Americans should know about America’s longest war.

Vizcarrondo served two deployments in Afghanistan — the first in 2010 and the second as sergeant major in 2012. During the 33 years leading up to his retirement in 2015 from the Marine Corps, half of his 12 deployments were in hostile fire areas, including Beirut in 1984, the Gulf War, and the Iraq War from 2006 to 2008.

Jim Saenz.jpg

As a Special Forces officer, Saenz was deployed to Afghanistan several times throughout the mid-2000s. He previously served in Operation Desert Storm among other deployments, combating terrorism and on counter-narcotics missions. He retired from the Army as a colonel in 2017, after 30 years of service.

Between the two of them, the men served our country for more than 60 years.

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