In the first half of the 19th century when Asian/Pacific Islander Americans began immigrating to the United States, many found employment in the army. The military was able to provide comradery to A/PIA soldiers who were searching for cultural belonging through close communities. A/PIA veterans contributed significantly throughout U.S. history in wartime earning many awards and fighting to gain a foothold in the nation. The service of these A/PIA veterans must not be forgotten, as some even fought against their countries of ethnic origin. Beyond wartime, A/PIA military members have also served in leadership roles in the U.S.’s most prestigious defense administrations.
January 21, 2009
assumed office as United States Secretary of Veterans Affairs, appointed by President Obama.
retired as the most decorated Asian American in United States Military history.
attended Pursuit School in Texas becoming one of a select group of women qualified to fly high-powered, single-engine, fighter aircrafts as a part of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs)
September 21, 1944
had her map used by the United States to successfully crush the Japanese defense in Manila Harbour.
became the first Filipino and Asian American to receive the Medal of Honor.