Soldiers honored for aiding civilians

4 Fort Sam soldiers awarded Army Comm­endation medal

FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas - Four soldiers based in South Texas received the Army Commendation medal on Wednesday. All four were recognized for coming to the aid of civilians in South Texas.

"You've been recognized by your peers when you get that award. Its not an easy award to get. Sometimes you get selected for something that you did, " said Staff Sgt. David Gonzalez-Martinez, of San Juan, Puerto Rico.

In three of the cases, the soldiers are credited with saving lives. Some of the soldiers have had very specific life-saving training.

"I am trained medically, so I did have my medical bag in my trunk of the car, which I always carry," said Sgt. 1st Class David Mendoza, of San Benito, Texas.

Others said they did what just came naturally to them because of their training.

"So it wasn't like I had to think about it. It's one of the greatest things about being in the service, " said Gonzalez-Martinez.

While each of these soldiers is being awarded for heroic actions, none consider themselves to be a hero.

"I'm just doing what a soldier is trained to do, and I'm just happy that I could be able to help somebody out in the civilian world, " said Staff Sgt. Amy Gonima of McAllen, Texas.

"I don't think I'm a hero. I just did what anybody would do. I'm just a regular guy, " said Sgt. 1st Class Jorge Arriaga of Monterrey, Mexico.

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