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ACR-135 Specialist Manuel Joaquin Holguin Memorial Highway.(2013-2014)

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Assembly Concurrent Resolution No. 135

Relative to the Specialist Manuel Joaquin Holguin Memorial Highway.

[ Filed with Secretary of State  July 07, 2014. ]


ACR 135, Patterson. Specialist Manuel Joaquin Holguin Memorial Highway.
This measure would designate a specified portion of State Highway Route 245 in the County of Tulare as the Specialist Manuel Joaquin Holguin Memorial Highway. The measure would also request the Department of Transportation to determine the cost of appropriate signs showing this special designation and, upon receiving donations from nonstate sources covering the cost, to erect those signs.
Fiscal Committee: YES  

WHEREAS, United States Army Specialist Manuel Joaquin Holguin was born August 29, 1984, in Visalia, California, and was the eldest of two sons of Manuel and Lydia Holguin. His brother Javier was two years younger; and
WHEREAS, Joaquin, as he was known to his family, grew up in the small foothill community of Elderwood, California, and attended public schools in Woodlake, California, graduating from Woodlake Union High School in June 2002; and
WHEREAS, Joaquin was an athlete, playing soccer and baseball from the age of 5 years through high school. Living in the country, he also became knowledgeable in the use and safe handling of firearms and by the age of 12 years, he passed his hunter safety course and was proficient with a 12-gauge shotgun; and
WHEREAS, In the fall of 2001, Joaquin decided to join the United States Army, following in the footsteps of his grandfather and uncles who had served in the United States Army during World War II and the Vietnam War; and
WHEREAS, During his senior year of high school, Joaquin was admitted into the United States Army’s early enlistment program, officially enlisting upon graduation from high school for a three-year commitment on November 11, 2002, and was sent to Fort Benning, Georgia, for boot camp; and
WHEREAS, Joaquin remained at Fort Benning, Georgia, for advanced infantry training, graduating in March 2003 with a designation as a mortarman. He also earned an award for being the highest marksman with a rifle in his platoon and would go on to continually score as an expert with a rifle and mortar; and
WHEREAS, Joaquin was assigned as a gunner and driver to the 2nd Battalion, 6th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade of the 1st Armored Division in Baumholder, Germany. His division left Germany for Iraq in April 2003 and was assigned to an area of southern Baghdad operating out of Camp Muleskinner, but also saw action in Karbala and Al-Kut; and
WHEREAS, His division would remain in Iraq for 15 months before returning to Germany, during which time, in this his first tour of duty, Joaquin received the Combat Infantry Badge and earned the rank of Specialist; and
WHEREAS, Joaquin received orders that his active duty commitment was being extended. In November 2005, his brigade was sent back to the area of southern Baghdad Iraq for a second one-year tour of duty, and Joaquin volunteered to be part of the advanced detachment whose job was to get things in order for the arrival of the remainder of the brigade; and
WHEREAS, On July 15, 2006, his unit, doing mounted and foot patrols, responded to an explosion at a marketplace, set up a perimeter, and began to receive small arms fire. During the firefight, an improvised explosive device (IED) detonated, killing Joaquin and severely wounding another soldier; and
WHEREAS, Joaquin died one month before his 22nd birthday and three months before his tour of duty would have been completed; and
WHEREAS, Joaquin was awarded the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star Medals for his active military service in the United States Army for his actions, not only on that day, but for the entire time he spent in Iraq; and
WHEREAS, Joaquin was also awarded the Army Commendation Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the Iraqi Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, and the Presidential Unit Citation Award for his two tours of duty in Iraq; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Assembly of the State of California, the Senate thereof concurring, That the Legislature hereby designates the portion of State Highway Route 245 (Millwood Drive) from Avenue 364 to Avenue 398 near the town of Elderwood, in the County of Tulare, as the Specialist Manuel Joaquin Holguin Memorial Highway to honor Specialist Holguin’s dedication and sacrifice on behalf of his country; and be it further
Resolved, That the Department of Transportation is requested to determine the cost of appropriate signs, consistent with the signing requirements for the state highway system, showing this special designation and, upon receiving donations from nonstate sources sufficient to cover the cost, to erect those signs; and be it further
Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the Director of Transportation and to the author for appropriate distribution.