In June, 2015, Legislation was introduced in Congress to honor WWII Filipino Veterans with the Congressional Gold Medal, a press release announced (in part):

Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI) and Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) today announced the introduction of legislation awarding the Congressional Gold Medal to Filipino Veterans of World War II. They were joined in this effort by Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), Senator Dean Heller (R-NV), Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA), Senator Brian Schatz (D-HI) and Congressman Joe Heck (R-NV), Congressman Juan Vargas (D-CA), Congressman Mark Takai (D-HI), Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-CA), and Congressman Mike Thompson (D-CA) as original cosponsors of the measure. “Filipino veterans fought bravely alongside American forces during World War II, and our recognition of their service and sacrifice is long overdue,” said Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard. “Our nation owes these individuals our deepest and sincere gratitude. I am pleased to join my colleagues in a bipartisan and bicameral effort to honor these veterans with the Congressional Gold Medal, a well-earned tribute for their service.”..

Links to related materials:

Description of legislation

Background Information



The 761st Tank Battalion

The 761st Tank Battalion was activated on April 1, 1942, at Camp Claiborne, Louisiana, and deployed to Europe, landing at Omaha Beach in France on October 10, 1944.

The Battalion trained at Camp Hood, Texas, where they were rated superior by Second Army Commander Lt.Gen. Ben Lear. They landed on the Continent with high morale -- some said they were cocky.

Later referred to as the Black Panther Tank Battalion, the 761st was attached to the XII Corps' 26th Infantry Division, assigned to Gen. George S. Patton Jr.'s Third Army, an army already racing eastward across France, and committed to combat on Nov. 7, 1944.

As a result of their great fighting abilities they spearheaded a number of Patton's moves into enemy territory.  They forced a hole in the Siegfried Line, allowing Patton's 4th Armored Division to pour through into Germany.  They fought in France, Belgium, and Germany, and were among the first American forces to link up with the Soviet Army (Ukranians) at the River Steyr in Austria. 

Art composition of Staff Sergeant Ruben Rivers contributed by Jody Harmon

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