Rank / Branch:
SP4 E-4 U.S. Army
196TH INFANTRY BRIGA
Date of Birth:
HOSTILE, OTHER EXPLO
Awards & Decorations:
See Alphabetical list
list by County
ISMAEL HOLGUIN, SPECIALIST 4TH CLASS, U.S. ARMY, BIG SPRING, HOWARD COUNTY, TEXAS
AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Combat Infantryman's Badge, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal
Ismael Martinez Holguin was born in Big Spring, Texas to Amelia Martinez and Ramon Nonato Holguin. He had two brothers and six sisters. His father had come to Big Spring in 1930 as a laborer with the Texas and Pacific Railroad. Mr Holguin worked for 18 years with the railroad and then spent 20 years working as a custodian at the Kate Moore School, retiring in early 1967 after 20 years of service. Ismael attended Big Spring schools and was a 1966 graduate of Big Spring High School.
After high school, Ismael worked at the Big Spring State Hospital up to being drafted into the U.S. Army. He entered the Army January 11, 1967 and completed his basic training at Fort Bliss and AIT at Fort Knox, Kentucky as a armorer. When he came home on leave aftter training, he married Conchita Holguin of Big Spring on May 27, 1967 at the St. Thomas Catholic Church in Big Spring.
He started his tour in Vietnam on July 14, 1967. He was assigned to F Troop, 17th Cavalry, 196th Light Infantry Brigade under the organizational control of the 23rd (Americal) Division. The 17th Cav was the ground recon unit of the 196th Light Infantry Brigade. Specialist Holguin was Missing in Action from February 7, 1968 until Febraury 17, 1968 when his body along with four other troopers were found. It was during the early days of TET and his unit was involved in some fierce fighting and the military vehicle he was last seen on had been hit by heavy weapons. His unit was not able to establish control of the area of the fire fight until 10 days later.
Specialist Holguin was buried with full military honors in the Mount Olive Cemetery in Big Spring, Texas. He was survived by his wife, his parents, and his two brothers and two sisters. The were, Mrs. Mary Arispie of Waco, Texas; Mrs. Alice Fierro of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Mrs Isabel Auguiana, Mrs. Anita Valles, Mrs Cruz Martinez, and Mrs.Hope Mendosa all of Big Spring and brothers, David and Raymond Holguin, Jr. His brother, David had just returned to Big Spring from the Army where he had served in Germany.
Shortly after Ismael's funeral, his wife joined the U.S. Women's Army Corp. In August 1968, while Private Conchita Holguin was in training at Fort McClellan, Alabama, she was presented with the Ismael's posthumous awards. He was awarded the Combat Infantryman's Badge, the Bronze Star for Meritorius Service, the Purple Heart, the Good Conduct Medal. In the shadow box were his other awards of the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal and the Vietnam Campaign Medal.
Mount Olive Cemetery, Big Spring, Texas