Luis R. Claudio, Sports Editor                                                                                                                              Home Page

Luis is the Sports Editor for El Boricua, the monthly cultural publication. He keeps us up to date on the latest boricua sports news .

December 2006 - It’s that time of the year when Ivonne gives us literary freedom to “explore beyond the shore” of our specialized topics for the magazine. In times past, I have spoken of Christmas with our family (Dec’04) and of being granted a wish (Dec’05). I have written about Christmas in Vietnam and about a dinner prepared by Chelo while we were on patrol in the jungles of that country. And as I ponder these things, I can not help to think that once again our Boricua boys are defending our way of life in nasty battlefields of Afghanistan and Iraq.

It is because of this reason that I forego the pleasure of nostalgic remembrances of Christmas’s gone by, to focus on the present job that our heroic soldiers are doing in lands far from our Island or their homes outside of the Island.

I never stand more erect and more proud, than when I see a Boricua soldier in any battlefield, of any war. I recently watched a documentary of the 3rd ID (Infantry Div) during the Korean War. More important than that, was what was said about a Regiment of that Division. They talked about bravery, courage and history. The honor of the last bayonet charge of any American military unit falls on the 65th Infantry Regiment made up of Boricua soldiers in the frozen lands of Korea.

Boricua’s serving today in the 3rd and 4th ID serve in the shadows of Boricua troopers that fought and died in the battlefields of Vietnam. That their spirits are with the new Boricua soldier as he or she carries out its duties as soldiers. Some of my very own 1/17th Cavalry are now active in Iraq, the 3rd Herd of the 173rd was a sister company of ours full of Boricua’s during the Vietnam War.

I will never forget Edwin Colón, Bronze Star recipient with the 101st Airborne. The last time I saw him, he was a very young man, returning to his home in New York City. That’s who we were. Young Boricua’s serving, dieing and living, because we had a duty, and in spite of the political rhetoric, we soldiered and for that, I live forever grateful.

I now send this humble message to all. I modified it from Shakespear’s Henry V on a speech before the battle at St. Crispin’s Day:

“And today shall never go by, from this day to the ending of the world, but we Boricua soldiers shall be remembered – We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; for he today that sheds his blood shall be my brother. Be he never so shy, this day shall gentle his condition; and gentlemen all over shall think themselves cursed they were not here, and hold their manhood’s cheap while any speaks that fought with us upon any war…that our Islita can live so free.”

I wish you a Merry Christmas Boricua soldier. God bless you on your journey…and in Gods good time, may you come home safely back to us, your family and a grateful Island waits for you.

Recommended reading:
De la Guerra de Vietnam - Santa Montaña Puertorriqueña
La Guerra de Vietnam – Tragedia Puertorriqueña
Author: Sgt. Osvaldo Fernández Gordián


 

Biography

Saludos… my name is Luis R. Claudio. I was born in Guanica, Puerto Rico and grew up in La Urb. Luchetti, Manati. I graduated from Fernando Callejo, High School and was drafted to the US Army to serve in Vietnam.

I attended college in Daytona Beach before returning to the army and served as a Captain in a Special Forces Airborne unit. I served as the Air Operations Office S-3A for an Airborne Special Forces Battalion.

I met my wife Jenny while stationed at Ft. Carson Colorado and we were married on Aug. 28 1974. Twenty-nine years later we are still together, amazing! We have three boys; Luis Daniel (Papito) attended the University of Texas at Dallas and now works for a radio station in NYC. My middle son Joshua A. Claudio just graduated from Oklahoma Wesleyan University and works in Dallas. Shan, my youngest is still in high school. His ambition is to be a professional skateboard skater and live in a Porsche. Yeah right… dream on son.

I am a manufacturing manager for a medium size company in Dallas and I coach an amateur baseball team in the Dallas Amateur Baseball Association. My program has generated over 18 baseball scholarships, which are applied to four-year college education for some of my players. My baseball program has attracted players for Division I and II, and Junior Colleges from around the country, Hawaii and Puerto Rico. Our team has won many championships or division playoffs.

I played baseball in Manati and I learned to coach from those that coached before me, my coaches in Puerto Rico. I coach a very aggressive style of play and ask that my players maximize every effort. I am proud of the many young men that have gone through our program here in Dallas as many of them are today, playing baseball in major universities and some are in minor league ball.

I continue to play baseball; I have the t-shirts to prove it. I am a catcher in an adult wood-bat baseball league or a Ben Gay league like I like to call it. It is for players 30 years and older and I really enjoy it. I can still hit the curve and the knuckleball and I enjoy watching the fastball sail by me. I travel to Puerto Rico every February to play in the Caribbean series in conjunction with Federacion de Beisbol Aficionado de Puerto Rico. Life cannot be better.