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Army Camp Building Named For MD Soldier Killed In Iraq

A former Prince George's County police officer, who died while serving in the Iraq in 2006, will be posthumously honored when a California Army camp names a building after him today.

 

A fallen soldier and former Prince George's County police officer will be honored when a building on a California-based Army training camp will be named after him.

in Dublin, CA is dedicating its newest building this week to Army reserve soldier, Staff Sergeant Robert Hernandez, killed in 2006 in Iraq.

Hernandez, formerly attached to the 80th Training Command which operates a tenant unit at the Dublin base, is being honored posthumously for his bravery, selflessness and sacrifice.

"No sacrifice is as great as giving your life for your country," said Major General Bill Gerety, commanding general of the 80th Training Command.

"He has done his part for his country," Gerety said. "Now we will do our part to memorialize Staff Sergeant Hernandez."

Building 517 will be named "SSG Robert Hernandez Armed Forces Reserve Center" at a dedication ceremony scheduled 11 a.m. Friday at the Dublin military site.

"Buildings are named after great people -- presidents, scholars and other famous people," said Command Sergeant Major James Wills, the 80th's top enlisted soldier.

"Staff Sergeant Hernandez was someone great," Wills said. "He was a soldier, who epitomized what the non-commissioned officer corps is all about."  

Hernandez was 45 years old when he died March 28, 2006 after an explosive device detonated near his vehicle convoy in Taquaddum, Iraq.

A Maryland resident and father to two sons, Hernandez was a former active-duty Army soldier and police officer in Baltimore, Prince George's County, Md. and Washington D.C.

Representative Jerry McNerney (D-Stockton), along with Wills, Gerety, Hernandez's family, the 191st Army band, color guard and other military associates will be in attendance at the Aug. 17 tribute highlighting Hernandez's exemplary life as citizen and soldier.  

Fellow police officers recall Hernandez as a hard-working team player and community activist, who mentored elementary-school children and assisted with care-package drives for Mozambique hunger victims.

Among Hernandez's numerous awards are the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Good Conduct Medal, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal and Expert Badge with Rifle and Grenade Bars.

Friday's ceremony is closed to the general public due to space and security restrictions, according to a Camp Parks spokesperson.

For more information on Camp Parks, its history and current operations, visit the California Military Museum's web site.

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