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Rafel Toro

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Rafel Toro
BornHumacao, Puerto Rico
Died(1927-08-03)August 3, 1927
San Fernando, Nicaragua
Cementerio Historico Municipal Barrio La Pratt in Humacao, Puerto Rico
AllegianceUnited States United States of America
Service/branchSeal of the United States Marine Corps.svg United States Marine Corps
Unit3rd Battalion 5th Marines
Battles/warsBanana Wars
  • United States occupation of Nicaragua
    • Battle of San Fernando
AwardsNavy Cross

Private Rafel Toro (born in Humacao, Puerto Rico) was a United States Marine Corps private who was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross for his "extraordinary heroism in battle"[1] while fighting in Nicaragua during the second Nicaragua campaign in 1927.

Toro was part of the U.S. Marine Corps occupation force in Nicaragua. On July 25, 1927, Private Toro was on advance guard duty into Nueva Segovia. As he rode into town, he was attacked; returning fire, he was able to hold back the enemy until reinforcements arrived. He was mortally wounded in this action for which he was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross.

Navy Cross citation[edit]


Private, U.S. Marine Corps
Guardia Nacional de Nicaragua
Date of Action: July 25, 1927

The Navy Cross is presented to Rafel Toro, Private, U.S. Marine Corps, for extraordinary heroism in battle when on the occasion of an engagement at San Fernando, Nicaragua, July 25, 1927, during an insurrection in that country, while performing advance guard duty in an important expedition into Nueva Segovia, Private Toro, accompanying his commanding officer, rode ahead into the town and on being attacked, fearlessly proceeded against tremendous odds, returning the fire, and at the risk of his own life materially assisted in holding the enemy in check until the arrival of reinforcements. Although receiving wounds at this time, which later resulted in his death, Private Toro continued in the fight to the last displaying that type of grit, determination and courage which characterizes conduct above and beyond the call of duty.[1] Authority - USMC Communiqué: 205227 ACE-jfb (December 21, 1927), Born: at Humacao, Puerto Rico, Home Town: Humacao, Puerto Rico


File:El Monumento de la Recordacion.jpg
El Monumento de la Recordación

On May 28, 2007 — Memorial Day — Senator Kenneth McClintock, President of the Senate of Puerto Rico, along with Puerto Rico National Guard Adjutant General Colonel David Carrión, unveiled the names of Puerto Rican military heroes most recently added to "El Monumento de la Recordación" (the Monument of Remembrance). Among those newly honored were Rafel Toro, Manuel Rivera Jr. and Medal of Honor recipient Humbert Roque Versace.[2] The monument, which honors Puerto Rico's fallen military, is located in front of the Capitol Building in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Awards and decorations[edit]

Among Rafel Toro's awards and decorations are the following:

Navy Cross Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal Second Nicaraguan Campaign Medal

Further reading[edit]

  • "Puertorriquenos Who Served With Guts, Glory, and Honor. Fighting to Defend a Nation Not Completely Their Own"; by : Greg Boudonck; ISBN 978-1497421837 Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png.
  • "Historia militar de Puerto Rico"; by: Hector Andres Negroni; publisher=Sociedad Estatal Quinto Centenario (1992); ISBN 84-7844-138-7 Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png.

See also[edit]

Other articles of the topics Biography AND Puerto Rico : Luis F. Castro, Frances M. Vega, Abdiel Colberg, Irene M. Zoppi, Edwin Perez (singer), Enrique Romero-Nieves, Manuel Rivera Jr.

Other articles of the topic Biography : Donald H. Spangler, Black Jack Mulligan, Ksenija Divjak, Simcha Eichenstein, Priya Anjali Rai, Carla Brown, Wayne H. Babbitt

Other articles of the topic Puerto Rico : Puerto Rico Highway 690, Enrique Romero-Nieves, César Luis González, Manuel Rivera Jr., Jorge Otero Barreto, Pedro Rodríguez (soldier), UPR Law School Building
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  • List of Puerto Rican military personnel
  • Puerto Rican recipients of the Navy Cross
  • Hispanics in the United States Marine Corps


  1. 1.0 1.1 Toro Navy Cross citation.
  2. El Vocero, May 29, 2007, page 3.


  • "Toro, Rafel (citation)". U.S. Marine Corps Recipients of The Navy Cross, 1919–1942. Compiled by C. Douglas Sterner, HomeofHeroes.com. p. 37. Archived from the original (Word document) on September 29, 2007. Retrieved 2007-01-19. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)

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