Letter tp Hon. Carlos Del Toro, Secretary of the Navy - Kaine, Luria, & Virginia Delegation Urge Navy Sec. Del Toro to Name Ship After Medal of Honor Recipient Telesforo Trinidad


Dear Secretary Del Toro,

On behalf of our Filipino American constituents, we urge you to fully examine the broad support for the naming of a U.S. Navy ship after Congressional Medal of Honor recipient, Fireman Second Class Telesforo Trinidad.

Trinidad was awarded the Medal of Honor, in accordance with General Order Number 142 signed by the Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels on April 1, 1915, due to his extraordinary heroism in the line of duty. After the USS San Diego (ACR-6) suffered from boiler explosions on January 21, 1915, Trinidad brought to safety two members of the crew, despite suffering injuries of his own.

Over a century later, Telesforo Trinidad is both the first and sole Filipino veteran of the U.S. Navy to be awarded the Medal of Honor. For over a century, Filipinos and Filipino Americans have served in the U.S. Navy, since the establishment of the Insular Force in 1901. We have heard from numerous constituents and veterans requesting that the Navy specifically consider naming a Navy Surface Combatant after Telesforo Trinidad, and we have heard that such an action will honor all Filipinos and Filipino Americans and others who have served in the U.S. Navy.

We urge you to consider the perspective of our service members, veterans, and community members who are advocating strongly for this action. There is an opportunity to honor the service of countless veterans, and we look forward to hearing from you on this issue of importance to so many that we represent.

Thank you for your consideration.