Latino to lead Army’s Old Guard at Inauguration on Tuesday

January 17th, 2009 · 9 Comments

Earlier this morning I read this inspiring story about Lt. Col. Jaime Martinez, who recently completed treatment for a rare cancer. Lt. Col. Martinez will command The Old Guard, the Army’s oldest infantry regiment, during the inauguration festivities. He will be tasked with saluting the departing president and welcoming the new commander in chief Barack Obama, while commanding hundreds of soldiers through the throngs of people gathered to watch the ceremonies.

Martinez, 44, has been in the Army for 23 years and is an alum of Eastern Illinois University. He has been accustomed to being in high profile and hot spots, having recently served in Iraq and Afghanistan and on the personal staff of Dick Cheney and Hillary Rodham Clinton.

This man embodies what we can accomplish with education, dedication, and perseverance. The Army was so confident in Lt. Col. Martinez’s abilities that he was assigned to The Old Guard before his cancer treatment was completed. Aside from the ceremonial tasks, this regiment will provide security and medical care for the millions who are expected to gather on the Mall on Tuesday.

Photo Credit: Army Lt. Col. Jamie Martinez 01/16/09, AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari

Tags: Barack Obama · Dick Cheney · Hillary Clinton · Iraq War

9 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Anna // Jan 17, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    Congratulations to Lt Col Jaime Martinez. Although I wish that a Latino American had a speaking role at the inauguration. So far I the only two Latinos in the ceremony that I am aware of are Mr. Martinez and pianist Gabriela Montero.

    Bottom line: The Democrats would not have won without our large turnout.

  • 2 Anna // Jan 17, 2009 at 8:59 pm

    The only drawback is that he has to salute Dubya.


  • 3 Reyfeo // Jan 18, 2009 at 8:50 pm

    As well he should Anna…unlike you Lt Col Marinez knew when he signed up for service that he would have to salute any President he served in the very uniform he wears. That says the man has character to do the right thing no matter what his political views are.

    I take it by your statement that you wouldn’t know how to do this…it’s shameful to know there’s latino like you who becuase of your hatred for others (Bush) can’t see the good in Lt Col Martinez saluting an incumbent president who has kept us safe and a new President we all hope (and stand with, becuase we know that’s the right thing do, even though some of us didn’t vote for him) will do the same and or better Job.

    Good on Lt Col Martinez!

  • 4 Anna // Jan 19, 2009 at 12:01 am

    I respect Martinez, but I could not in good conscience salute a war criminal.

  • 5 Anna // Jan 19, 2009 at 12:04 am

    re: “it’s shameful ”

    You guys are always ashamed. Read the posts here and note how many are ashamed of something. Shame is a debilitating emotion that holds people back.

  • 6 L.PULEO // Jan 19, 2009 at 6:58 am

    I am very proud of Lt. Col Jaime Martinez and all he has done for our country. He is truly a man of honor. There should be more people like him in this world. I pray his cancer stays in remission.

  • 7 john // Jan 20, 2009 at 5:09 pm

    Jaime is one heck of a good guy — fine Army officer, great Boy Scout leader, great dad. He’s a credit to himself, his family, his parents and his country.

  • 8 Irma // Jan 21, 2009 at 11:59 am

    Dear Webmaster,

    I want to suggest a topic for discussion. That would be the the issue of institutional overhead paid by the US government to educational institutions when educators are awarded research grants.
    Personally, I think it has become a scam and that the American public need to demand that things change.

    Here is how it works. Lets say Dr. Gonzalez
    applies for and is awarded a $500,00 research grant from the US government through the National Institutes of Health. The university where Dr. Gonzalez requests in addition, 65% overhead on every dollar awarded. This means that the school will get $325,000 on top of the
    500 , Dr. Gonzalez gets. Now , a tax payer may ask why the school should get that overhead.
    The official answer is that they use the money to
    pay for the electricity, water, gas , heating and
    building and administrative expenses associated
    with Dr. Gonzalez ‘ laboratory. Fine, but what is often not noticed is that they take the overhead on EVERY grant awarded. If Dr. Gonzalez is very successful at getting grants, at some point the university is PROFITTING off
    of that overhead.

    The universities, in particular the medical schools have taken this issue of overhead and have gone to town with it. They have become so dependent on the money, that now advancement to tenure is based in part on how
    many grants ( ie overhead ) a professor can get.
    In addition, medical schools now expect their faculty to get at least 50% of their salaries and
    benefits from grants. I think this is quite unfair to the taxpayer. Why should the US taxpayer
    pay the salaries of university/medical school
    scientists? Currently, institutional overhead
    at most medical schools ranges from a low of
    50% to 90% ! Naturally, overhead REDUCES
    the total amount of money available to buy research supplies!

    The new administration could save tens of millions of dollars by simply reducing the amount of institutional overhead they pay to
    universities. I think 35% should be sufficient and also that there should be a fixed absolute value of overhead paid per individual. The latter practice would prevent the universities
    from profitting off of the American taxpayer.
    To protect the scientists, the US government should state that it is ILLEGAL for universities
    to demand that their faculty bring in money
    as a part of the promotion process.

    Would you be willing to write an article about this?

  • 9 Anna // Jan 21, 2009 at 9:39 pm

    Re: “Why should the US taxpayer
    pay the salaries of university/medical school

    Because they’re doing research that helps mankind. If they cure cancer or diabetes, we all benefit. Universities, especially public universities, need more money, not less. Do you want to be a third world country?

    We’ve been brainwashed to think that spending our tax dollars on things like education and infrastructure is a “waste.” Meanwhile, Wall St and war profiteers get trillions of dollars of taxpayer money for nothing.

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