World War II

Stories with interview subjects from our World War II collection. Browse all stories to see subjects across all Voces collections.

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Table containing information and links for subjects in the site.
Subject Collection Story Interviewed by

Santiago Brito Craver

Santiago Brito Craver  

World War II

By Alyssa Armentrout

As U.S. Army medic Santiago Craver drove his ambulance up to the pick-up site in Northern Africa, one of the wounded men glanced up at him from below.

He had a familiar face.

"It was one of my friends who...

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Robert Rivas

Delfina Josepha Lujan Cuellar

Delfina Josepha Lujan Cuellar  

World War II

By Amanda Crawford

Delfina Lujan Cuellar grew up in Albuquerque, N.M., at a time when girls were expected to become mothers and wives. Like many Mexican American girls of her generation, she wasn’t allowed to attend school after the eighth...

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Dr. Maggie Rivas-Rodriguez

Jose Cuellar

Jose Cuellar  

World War II

By Peggy Hanley

Jose "Joe" Cuellar volunteered to be a scout in the South Pacific during World War II because scouts were considered leaders by his fellow soldiers. At the tender age of 18, Cuellar was convinced he wanted to be a leader,...

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Jennifer Sanchez

Fred Davalos

Fred Davalos  

World War II

By Clint Hale

Dealing with the harsh realities of World War II was tempered by experiences that Fred Davalos encountered in his youth. He’s more at ease relating the difficulties of his childhood than his experiences during the war, when he...

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Dr. Maggie Rivas-Rodriguez

Luis Reyes Davila

Luis Reyes Davila  

World War II

By Liliana Velazquez

Lying on the deck of the USS Tripoli on a quiet night on the Pacific Ocean, Luis Reyes Davila felt at peace in a time of war. During this brief respite from battle, with the soothing waves splashing against the aircraft...

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Liliana Velázquez

Joseph Davila

Joseph Davila  

World War II

By Prisilla Totiyapungprasert

Corporal Joseph Davila had a choice during his military occupation in the Southern Philippines: He could stay with the other soldiers to hold up enemy advancement toward American military headquarters, or he...

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Drs. Joanne Rao & Mario Sanchez

Manuel De Jesus Lozano

Manuel De Jesus Lozano - Voces Oral History Project  

World War II

By Angela Bonilla

From a very young age, World War II veteran Manuel De Jesus Lozano was on the move. After a childhood marked by struggle, his work ethic propelled him to a long and successful career in the Air Force.

He...

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Nikki Cruz

Roberto De la Cruz

Roberto De la Cruz  

World War II

By Cheryl Smith Kemp

When military recruiters showed up at the local Post Office in early August of 1942, Roberto De la Cruz saw it as a ticket out of the Rio Grande Valley, an escape from a lonely laborious life in South Texas.

So...

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Raquel C. Garza

Alfred A. De La Cruz

Alfred Q. De La Cruz  

World War II

By Donnie Hogan

Alfred Antonio De La Cruz made $2 per week working as a radio technician, while the military paid $17 per month, so joining the Army was an opportunity he couldn’t turn down.

De La Cruz says he has always had a...

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Kris Edward Rodriguez

Miguel de la Peña

Miguel de la Peña  

World War II

By Shelby Downs

Miguel de la Peña’s first injury in World War II landed him in the infirmary for two days. His second injury landed him his wife of 58 years.

After first suffering a concussion at Normandy, de la Peña was wounded by...

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Rajesh Reddy

Rubiana De la Peña

Rubiana De la Peña  

World War II

By SHELBY DOWNS

Miguel de la Peña's first injury in World War II landed him in the infirmary for two days. His second injury landed him his wife of 58 years.

After first suffering a concussion at Normandy in July, Mr. de la Peña was...

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Rajesh Reddy

Teodoro De la Rosa

 

World War II

By Anna Wong

Evident in his service to the United States, Teodoro De La Rosa is a man who’s proud and loyal to his country.

De La Rosa was born in the humble surroundings of Pharr, Texas. His father, Gregorio De La Rosa, was a...

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Joe Myers Vasquez

James Arthur De Leon

 

World War II

By Angela Macias

With an older brother John already serving in the Army in Europe, James DeLeon was adamant about going to serve his country during World War II.

"My parents were against me joining, but I thought I should do my...

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Theresa De Leon Weeks

Odilon De Leon

Odilon De Leon  

World War II

By Jonathan Damrich

Odilon De Leon wore his Purple Heart in the middle of his cap, right below the spot where it read “Okinawa 1945.”

“I’m proud and happy that I served my country,” De Leon said, “even though I was disabled at the...

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Raquel C. Garza

Peter De Leon

Peter De Leon  

World War II

By Antonio Gilb

Peter De Leon considered himself lucky after returning home to Chicago after serving in World War II. At least 10 of his neighborhood friends came back in body bags.

The closest De Leon came to dying was a kamikaze...

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Antonio Gilb

Lita De Los Santos

Lita De Los Santos  

World War II

By Brooke N. Miller

World War II flung Lita De Los Santos’ eight brothers across the world. The front room of the De Los Santos’ home in Eastland County, Texas, was dominated by a map of the world. De Los Santos and her mother, Angelita...

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Raquel C. Garza

Jesse de los Santos

Jesse de los Santos  

World War II

By Cheryl Smith Kemp

Number 10 in a brood of 16, Jesse De los Santos was well accustomed to being a mere piece of something much larger than himself by the time he joined the United States Calvary in 1939.

Little did he know, however...

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Alejandro De los Santos

Alejandro De los Santos  

World War II

By Denise Chavarri

Alejandro De Los Santos of Laredo served overseas during World War II for about 40 months.

"I missed home but at the same time I knew I couldn't return," De Los Santos said. "I wrote to my mom very often to let her...

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Denise Chávarri

Felipe de Ortego y Gasca

 

World War II

By Nathan Batoon

Felipe Ortego was a high school dropout in 1943, but after joining the Marine Corps and serving in the Pacific Theater, he’d awakened a new passion: writing. And that passion would imbue him with a new identity.

“The...

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Mario Barerra

Elena Tamez De Peña

 

World War II

By Jaime Margolis

When Elena De Peña was growing up, her parents emphasized the importance of a good education. Her father was a mechanic and her mother ran a grocery store in San Benito, Texas; De Peña said they set a good example for her...

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Erika Martinez

Gilbert Louis Delgado

Gilbert Louis Delgado  

World War II

By Andrea Couch

Growing up in Santa Fe, N.M., in the '30s and '40s, Gilberto Delgado saw sign language for the first time: It was how one of his friends communicated with her deaf grandmother.

Later, that childhood exposure would lead...

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Andres Romero

Santos Deliz

Santos Deliz, San Juan, Puerto Rico.  

World War II

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...

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Lucy Guevara

Moses F. Diaz

Moses Diaz was interviewed on Thursday, January 6, 2011 at the Community Settlement Association of Riverside in Riverside, California. (Photo By: Marc Hamel)  

World War II, Korean Conflict

By Trina Berberet

He may have been only 16 at the time, but Moses Diaz decided to enlist in the U.S. Navy because, as he recalled: “I didn’t want to miss out on the war.”

It was 1945, near the end of the World War II, and Diaz...

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Benigno Nevarez Diaz

Benigno Nevarez Diaz  

World War II

By Veronica Olvera

Amid the horror of war in the European Theater, Benigno Diaz found himself in awe of the deadly efficiency of enemy forces, struck by "how accurate the German aviators were," he said.

Diaz served as a scout during...

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Cheryl Browntein-Santiago

Joseph John Diaz

 

World War II

By Barbara Gibbon

Despite being in an infantry unit that saw some of the most fighting during World War II, Joseph Diaz takes it all in stride. His memory hasn't faded over the years, and neither have the realities of fighting a war.

...

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William Luna

Leno Flores Díaz

Leno Flores Díaz  

World War II

By Kathy Adams

As an immigrant from Juarez, Mexico, living in East Los Angeles in the ’20s and ’30s, Leno Flores Díaz remembers going to school in hand-me-downs and feeling ostracized when the teachers anglicized his name.

“They had...

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Raquel C. Garza

Luis Alfonso Diaz de León

Luis Alfonso Diaz de León  

World War II

By Julia Bulhon

“War is horrible, but it helps you grow,” said Navy veteran Luis Diaz de León, of witnessing conflict’s brutality first hand.

As if that weren’t enough, Diaz de León has also withstood racism, earned a master’s degree...

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Raquel C. Garza

Alfred Dimas

Alfred Dimas  

World War II

By Christopher Trout

Alfred Dimas has spent his life in pursuit of adventure. This pursuit took him across the United States to find work wherever he could during the Depression, and in 1942 it took him into the U.S. Army as a volunteer....

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Dr. Maggie Rivas-Rodriguez

Beatrice Esudero Dimas

Beatrice Esudero Dimas  

World War II

By Jonathan Alexander

A church gathering, a pink dress and a comment to a friend 60 years ago set in motion the story of Beatrice Dimas. The party provided the scene, her dress caught young Alfred Dimas' eye, and his words said it all: she...

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Dr. Maggie Rivas-Rodriguez

Pete Dimas

Pete Dimas  

World War II

By Shelley Hiam

Memories of childhood and his mother's mouth-watering cooking remain fresh on Pete Dimas' mind. Sopapillas, chili with carne sauce and delicious beans are some of the foods he remembers.

"Mother was an excellent cook....

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Norma Gallegoz

Richard Dominguez

Richard Dominguez  

World War II

By Courtney Stoutmire

Richard Dominguez counts his "blessings" every day when he remembers his time in World War II. The best part: It was short and sweet.

Dominguez was drafted in June of 1943, but he wasn’t sent into combat until...

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Steven Rosales

Jeronimo F. Dominguez

 

World War II

By Caleb Miller

As he picked crops in Texas during his youth, Jeronimo Dominguez never imagined that one day he'd be taking shelter in a German foxhole while his comrades died around him.

Dominguez, who was born in March 1913 in...

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Lynn Maguire-Walker

Arturo Dominguez

 

World War II

By Kelsey Lawrence and Valerie Harris

Speaking in a labored but steady voice, Arturo Dominguez recalled with impressive precision the names of towns that his Army unit traveled through in Europe and the exact address --102 Casanova...

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Peter Haney

Ernest Eguia

Ernest Eguia  

World War II

By Stephen Stetson

Ernest Eguia spent a lifetime on the cutting edge. Rising above the crippling poverty of the Great Depression, Eguia was at the forefront of the Allied Invasion of Normandy during World War II and was also on the...

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Claudia Garcia

Leon Eguia

Leon Eguia  

World War II

By Liliana Velázquez

Leon Eguia has kept silent for many years, never inclined to share his feelings about World War II with anyone, not even his family.

"I saw a lot of things," said Eguia, who opened up during a recent interview. "...

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Liliana Velázquez

Ysaac C. Elizalde

Ysaac C. Elizalde  

World War II

By Ever Figueroa

You don’t have to be in combat to be a veteran.

During World War II, Ysaac Elizalde provided the troops with the food necessary to give them enough energy to prepare for the horrors of combat. Elizalde would go on to...

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David Silva

Davie Elizardo

Davie Elizardo  

World War II

By Israel Saenz

Davie Elizardo never asked for much. For a woman who grew up without an education, doing field labor throughout the day and watching one of her brothers go off to fight in the Pacific, the wellbeing of her family is all she...

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Israel Saenz

Rudy Elizondo

 

World War II

By Brittany Rodriguez

He was only a child when the war began, but Rudy Elizondo supported the United States in his own way.

From his time in the Boy Scouts to his service in the United States Navy, Elizondo proved that one could...

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Markel Rojas

Delmiro Isidro Elizondo

Delmiro Isidro Elizondo  

World War II

By Jane Slater and Chris Schulz

It was a Sunday in 1941 when Delmiro Isidro Elizondo bought a movie theater ticket. As he did, he learned about the attack on Pearl Harbor.

His life would never be the same again.

His day, as...

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Kevin Klauber

Raymon A. Elizondo

Raymon A. Elizondo  

World War II

By Israel Saenz

Growing up in Utah, Raymon Elizondo grew up having to scrap: he struggled to get as much schooling as he could, stood up to those who didn’t welcome Latinos and earned what he could as a railroad hand for Union Pacific...

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Israel Saenz

Raul Munoz Escobar

Raul Munoz Escobar  

World War II

By David Muto

Raul Escobar hesitates while recalling memories of bodies lying on the sands of Iwo Jima. He bows his head before continuing, repositioning a cap reading: “Once a Marine, Always a Marine.”

“I used to get so many...

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Raquel C. Garza

Concepción Alvarado Escobedo

Concepción Alvarado Escobedo  

World War II

By Sandra Freyberg

Growing up as the oldest of six girls, Concepción Alvarado Escobedo learned early what it means to take responsibility. Even when she was hardly more than a toddler she helped her mother take care of her younger sisters...

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Sandra Freyberg

Andrew Esparza

Andrew Esparza (left), Pinky Escoto (middle),and Shultz Wiht (right)in Bougainville Island in the South Pacific,June 1944.  

World War II

By Jacob Collazo

In the late 1930s, as war intensified in Europe, the United States was coming out of the Depression, but not yet directly involved in the War. In San Diego, a high school student named Andrew C. Esparza was biding...

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Rene Zambrano

Angel F. Esparza

Angel F. Esparza  

World War II

By Bianca Camaño

Education was always important in the Esparza home. So from an early age, Angel Esparza expected he and his six siblings would graduate from high school and go on to college.

Esparza attributes his high educational...

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Robert Rivas

Noe Espindola

Noe Espindola - Voces Oral History Project  

World War II

By Megan Breckenridge

Growing up in an artistic family that moved between the United States and Mexico, Noe Espindola was immersed in two cultures and languages. In time, however, he was given the opportunity to serve his native...

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Philip Rodriguez

Manuel Espinoza

Manuel Espinoza  

World War II

By Xochitl Salazar

Manuel Espinoza's father, Concepción, was struck by lightning in 1930 while working on railroad tracks in Colorado.

The older Espinoza's death had great repercussions: His young widow, Ventura Mendoza Espinoza, and...

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Xochitl Salazar

Mary Espiritu

 

World War II, Political & Civic Engagement

By Rebecca Millner

In more than 40 years of service, Mary Espiritu De Leon received at least 45 awards and honors, recognizing her commitment to San Antonio's Latino community, and especially its women.

Her role as a spokeswoman and...

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Stephen Casanova

Rafaela Muniz Esquivel

Rafaela Esquivel, studio photograph. Esquivel served as a nurse in the ARMY Nurse Corps with the 242nd General Hospital in Sissone, France during World War II.  

World War II

By Joanne R. Sanchez

San Antonio, TX - When she was seven years old, Rafaela Muñiz Esquivel - the second oldest in the family that would eventually include 15 children - began caring for her brothers and sisters. Rafaela stayed home from...

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Drs. Joanne Rao & Mario Sanchez

Gregoria Acosta Esquivel

Gregoria Acosta Esquivel  

World War II

By Lori Slaughenhoupt

Gregoria Esquivel was strongly influenced by her uncles who served in the military during World War II. Their patriotism and involvement in the war effort helped shape her perspective on life when she was only a child...

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Laura Herrera

Antonio M. Esquivel

 

World War II

By Robin Larson

For Antonio "Tony"M. Esquivel, any romanticized remembrances of youth are tempered with memories of pervasive pre-war segregation in his hometown and the inescapable horror he endured in combat.

"I liked the service...

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Dr. Carlos G. Velez-Ibanez