In honor of Guam’s fallen soldiers, sailors, corpsmen, and/or airmen, Senator Vicente “ben” Cabrera Pangelinan (D-Barrigada) introduced Bill 407-30 for the designation of I Milåyan i Mås Takhilo’ na Sakrifisiu (the Medal of the Ultimate Sacrifice). Members of the 30th Guam Legislature voted in favor of the bill which was signed into law as Public Law 30-193.

In February 2012, Senator Pangelinan and Speaker Judith T. Won Pat called for a working group meeting with representatives from the Guam National Guard, the Veterans Affairs Office, and local veterans’ organizations. The group discussed the details of the eligibility criteria as well as the need for assistance with gathering the information for the names of our fallen and contact information for their family members. The working group also decided that the design of the Medal would involve all students from around the island in grades K through 12.

Announcements were sent out to all public and private elementary, middle, and high Schools, calling for island-wide student participation. Over 900 artwork entries were received by the Office of Speaker Won Pat and were put up for public viewing at the Guam Premier Outlets in Tamuning. On April 22, 2012, five judges: Alan Van Aken, Terry Van Aken, Johnny “Atulai” Taitano, Bobby Taitano, and Frank Shimizu gathered at GPO and selected the top three entries from each division as well as the winning entry which was submitted by Angelica Gomez, a third grader from Santa Barbara Catholic School in Dededo. The design elements were later edited by local artist, Ron Castro.

The Office of Senator Pangelinan, meanwhile, continued to gather information for the names of over 150 service members who were residents of Guam or were stationed on Guam and were killed in action, dating as far back as World War II. The information was submitted to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) who would later give official confirmation of the names of individuals who were to be honored.

Upon receiving the information from the National Personnel Records Center (a division of NARA) the 31st Guam Legislature scheduled a Special Session for the presentation ceremony of I Milåyan i Mås Takhilo’ na Sakrifisiu. The ceremony took place on Tuesday, August 7, 2012 at the Guam Legislature Session Hall in Hagåtña, Guam. Family members were invited to receive 31 Medals, Legislative Resolutions, and Guam flags on behalf of their loved ones whose lives were lost in battle.

Senator Pangelinan’s office continues to receive information from families of other fallen servicewomen/men, and planning has already commenced for the preparation of a second ceremony.

All names verified to have been eligible for this recognition will be listed on the Honor Roll which is displayed at the legislative Session Hall until such time that the Congress Building is renovated and open for public use.
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Eligibility for I Milåyan i Mås Takhilo’ na Sakrifisiu:

Residents of Guam or service members stationed in Guam who were killed in action and were members of:

  •  the Guam National Guard;
  • the United States military reserves;
  • the United States Armed Forces; or
  • the Guam Militia/Guam Insular Force Guard

at the time they were killed in action and were engaged in:

  • action against an enemy of the United States or an enemy of Guam;
  • military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force;
  • serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party; or
  • serving in a combat zone as designated by Presidential Order.

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I Milåyan i Mås Takhilo’ na Sakrifisiu is to be presented to one of the following:

  1. the surviving spouse; or
  2. a surviving child in the absence of a surviving spouse; or
  3. a surviving grandchild in the absence of a surviving child; or
  4. a surviving parent in the absence of a surviving spouse or child.

For more information, please contact Lisa Dames, Anjelica Okada, or Selina Onedera-Salas at the Office of Senator Pangelinan at 473-4236/7.

 

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