Staff Sgt. Santo M. Carrillo’s willingness to serve in the military came from more than a love of country, it was for his children.
Santo Carrillo fought in World War II, the Korean War, and served two tours of duty in the Vietnam War.
After 22 years in the military, Santo Carrillo’s son, Daniel Carrillo, said he never shared his experiences with his children.
“He never spoke about it and we wish he would have filled in the details of what he actually went through,” Daniel Carrillo said.
Santo Carrillo’s family accepted his Bronze Star and several other medals on his behalf from Rep. Joaquin Castro Thursday.
“It makes you understand the difficulty he had back in those times battling three different wars and still maintaining family life and structure,” Daniel Carrillo said. “It’s very difficult and it puts things in perspective you know.”
Carrillo volunteered for a second tour of duty in Vietnam in order to provide for his family, and Castro said the honor was long overdue.
“Some of the folks here in San Antonio have waited years to be able to get their medals,” Castro said. “It means the world because they're very proud of their loved one, to be able to see what their family member achieved and what they sacrificed for their country.”