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U.S SOLDIER KILLED IN ACTION IN AN AMBUSH FOOTAGE +18
Reddit Flipboard Did you know that approximately 38, Americans in uniform are not American citizens — and that at least 10 men who have been killed in Iraq were not U. But, as 60 Minutes II first reported earlier this year, the heroism and sacrifice of non-citizens was barely known — until Lance Cpl. Jose Gutierrez died in battle in Iraq. He came from Guatemala, and he came to the United States illegally. Correspondent Bob Simon reports. We can tell you how his story ended. He was killed in a tank battle in southern Iraq on March We can also tell you how his story began. It began in a slum outside Guatemala City. Jose was orphaned when he was 8 years old and became a street child. Street children in Guatemala do not get their pictures taken. America will remember Jose as handsome and heroic. Today, Harris directs all their operations in Central America and fights for children so fiercely that Queen Elizabeth invested him into the exclusive Order of the British Empire, in his native England. He knew there was more to life than just being poor, so in Jose said he was leaving for America. It was a modern version of an underground railway, and the last leg was over the wall. But when Jose made it to the border, he got busted. He was 22 years old and the INS was going to turn him back. Saved by his baby face, Jose told the authorities he was only But, once again, he got lucky. He wound up in Torrance, Calif. They not only took him in, they loved him and called him their son. And you're going to be very proud of me. But he had such a positive attitude, says Nora Mosquera. A fight or a soldier to get ahead, and become someone in life. Or they go down the wrong road. I think with Jose, all his experiences made him stronger. He was not an unusual recruit. Most Marines are only high school graduates, most are working class, and many are Hispanic. And when a green card holder joins the military, he can apply for citizenship after three years, instead of five. But Jose told his mother he had other reasons for joining - other reasons for wanting to go to Iraq and help topple the regime of Saddam Hussein. And I'll give my life if I have to, in order to defend those children," Nora remembered Jose telling her. And those were his ideals, of becoming someone. Of being able to help those other children that are not as fortunate as he was. Of finding a family and coming to the U. Jose was one of the first U. No death of any soldier goes unmourned. But the death of a man who died for a country that was not his -- that proved especially poignant to many Americans, including President Bush who visited two wounded non-citizen soldiers and made them citizens on the spot. A cardinal officiated at a memorial service in a Los Angeles suburb, where many poor people, including Latinos, attended. And it's unfortunate sometimes that that's what has to happen in order for people to be known, in order for them to accomplish something. But how about in Guatemala? Jose told his family that he wanted to be buried there. It was, after all, his home. The Marines came down to give Jose a proper military farewell, but there were hardly any Guatemalans at the ceremony. Marines who were killed were Latinos. Are young Hispanic men who go up to the United States looking for future, for education? Are they being sent to the front because they're dispensable? But this is where Harris wanted him buried, in a plot reserved for Casa Alianza kids — the street children — of which Jose was one. Another kind of cemetery. And there is also a plaque there in memory of Jose. Here I am, Lord but I cannot arrive without your hand. Take me because I want to know your beautiful face. Excuse my errors but I want to share your beautiful heart. I am yours, Lord. Right now, Congress is considering several proposals that will make it quicker and easier for green card holders to become Americans when they join the military. Jose and the nine other green card holders who died in Iraq have prompted a number of congressional proposals that would make it quicker and easier for non-citizens to become Americans when they join the military. Several weeks after 60 Minutes II first broadcast this story, the U. It was not from Iraqi guns, but friendly fire, from his fellow Americans. The Mosquera family plans to establish a scholarship fund in the memory of U. Please send an email to josesfamily yahoo.
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