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US Navy - Guided Missile Destroyer

DDG 115 - USS Rafael Peralta

 

ddg-115 uss rafael peralta insignia crest patch badge us navy ddg-115 uss rafael peralta arleigh burke class guided missile destroyer bath iron works

 

Type, class: Guided Missile Destroyer - DDG; Arleigh Burke class, Flight IIA

Builder: General Dynamics Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine, USA

   

STATUS:

Awarded: September 26, 2011

Laid down: October 30, 2014

Launched: October 31, 2015

Commissioned: ?

I

   

Homeport:

Namesake: Sergeant Rafael Peralta / USMC (1979-2004)

Ships Motto: FORTIS AD FINEM

Technical Data: see: INFO > Arleigh Burke class Guided Missile Destroyer - DDG

 

ship images



Bath, Maine - October 2016

udd rafael peralta ddg-115 arleigh burke class flight iia destroyer
   
ddg-115 uss rafael peralta general dynamics bath iron works maine

ddg-115 uss rafael peralta construction
 

 

USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115):

 

Rafael Peralta (April 7, 1979 - November 15, 2004):

Sergeant Rafael Peralta, assigned to 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division, III Marine Expeditionary Force, Marine Corps Base Hawaii, was a United States Marine killed in combat during Second Battle of Fallujah in the city of Fallujah, Iraq. In September 2008, his family was notified that he was awarded the Navy Cross, the second highest award a United States Marine can receive.

Rafael Peralta was born on April 7, 1979 in Mexico City. Son of Rafael and Rosa Peralta, the oldest of four, with siblings Icelda, Karen and Ricardo, he immigrated to the United States, graduated from Morse High School in 1997, and joined the United States Marine Corps as soon as he had a green card in 2000. He later became an American citizen while serving in the Marine Corps.

According to accounts, Peralta served the United States with enthusiasm and patriotism: "In his parent's home, on his bedroom walls hung only three items - a copy of the United States Constitution, the Bill of Rights and his boot camp graduation certificate. Before he set out for Fallujah, he wrote to his 14-year old brother, 'be proud of me, bro...and be proud of being an American.'"


On November 15, 2004, 25 year old Sgt. Peralta, deployed to Iraq as a scout team leader assigned to Company A, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, along with his team was ordered to clear houses in the Operation Phantom Fury. Peralta was not assigned to enter the buildings, but chose to do so anyway.

Sergeant Peralta led his team through a series of house clearings before charging into the fourth house. He found two rooms empty on the ground floor. Peralta opened a third door and was hit multiple times with AK-47 fire, leaving him severely wounded. He dropped to the floor and moved aside in order to allow the Marines behind him to return fire.

The insurgents responded by throwing a grenade at the Marines. The two Marines with Sgt. Peralta tried to get out of the room but could not. Sgt. Peralta was still conscious on the floor and reports indicate that despite his wounds, he was able to reach for the grenade and pull it under his body absorbing the majority of the lethal blast and shrapnel which killed him instantly, but saved the lives of his fellow Marines.

Sgt. Peralta is buried in Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery in San Diego, California.


In December 2004, U.S. Congressman Bob Filner of California introduced legislation to award Sgt. Peralta the Medal of Honor. As of January 22, 2008, a Medal of Honor award for Sgt. Peralta was awaiting presidential approval.

On September 17, 2008, Rafael Peralta's family was notified by LtGen. Richard Natonski that he would not receive the Medal of Honor, but the Navy Cross instead, the service's second highest award for valor. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates rejected the Marine Corps' recommendation, concluding that his appointed panel unanimously confirmed that his actions did not meet the standard of "without any possibility of error or doubt". The central argument posed relates to whether the already mortally-wounded Peralta could have intentionally reached for the grenade, shielding his fellow Marines from the blast. In a Marine Corps investigation of the attack, Natonski said, "I believe beyond a shadow of a doubt" that the gravely wounded Peralta covered the grenade. The doubt arose due to some believe that Peralta was clinically dead when the insurgents threw the grenade.

Since the announcement that Peralta would receive the Navy Cross instead of the Medal of Honor, numerous groups and individuals have spoken out in support of the Medal of Honor for Peralta. The Congressional delegations from California and Hawaii, as well as the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, have requested a Presidential review of Gates' decision against a Medal of Honor award. Although calls to elevate the award have not been acted on to date, lawmakers have not given up and continue their efforts. Of the seven servicemembers nominations for the Medal of Honor that have reached the Secretary of Defense, Peralta's is the only nomination that has not been approved.

source: wikipedia

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Navy Cross Citation:

The President of the United States takes pride in presenting the NAVY CROSS posthumously to
SERGEANT RAFAEL PERALTA, USMC
for service as set forth in the following

CITATION:
For extraordinary heroism while serving as Platoon Guide with 1st Platoon, Company A, 1st Battalion, 3d Marines, Regimental Combat Team 7, 1st Marine Division, in action against Anti-Coalition Forces in support of Operation AL FAJR, in Fallujah, Iraq on 15 November 2004. Clearing scores of houses in the previous three days, Sergeant Peralta' asked to join an under strength squad and volunteered to stand post the night of 14 November, allowing fellow Marines more time to rest. The following morning, during search and attack operations, while clearing the seventh house of the day, the point man opened a door to a back room and immediately came under intense, close-range automatic weapons fire from multiple insurgents. The squad returned fire, wounding one insurgent. While attempting to maneuver out of the line of fire, Sergeant Peralta was shot and fell mortally wounded. After the initial exchange of gunfire, the insurgents broke contact, throwing a fragmentation grenade as they fled the building. The grenade came to rest near Sergeant Peralta's head. Without hesitation and with complete disregard for his own personal safety, Sergeant Peralta reached out and pulled the grenade to his body, absorbing the brunt of the blast and shielding fellow Marines only feet away. Sergeant Peralta succumbed to his wounds. By his undaunted courage, intrepid fighting spirit, and unwavering devotion to duty, Sergeant Peralta reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.

 

Rafael Peralta

sergeant rafael peralta usmc


Decorations:
rafael peralta decorations navy cross purple heart

Navy Cross, Purple Heart, Combat Action Ribbon, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal
National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal(with 1 service star), Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Navy Sea Service Deployment Ribbon
        
 

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