Fort Hood renamed after first Hispanic four-star general, Richard Cavazos
The fort, originally named after Confederate General John Bell Hood, is home to the 1st Cavalry Division and is also used by the U.S. Reserve and National Guard for training
May 10, 2023 8:48am
Updated: May 10, 2023 9:22am
Fort Hood, Texas, one of the U.S. military’s largest bases, was renamed on Tuesday after the Army’s first Hispanic four-star general, General Richard Cavazos.
Cavazos was born in Kingsville, Texas to Mexican-American parents. He was commissioned to the Army after graduating high school. He is a veteran of the Korean and Vietnam wars. Cavazos died in 2017 at 88 years old.
Cavazos earned a Silver Star and Distinguished Service Cross for leading a regiment of Puerto Rican soldiers known as “The Borinqueneers” during the Korean War. In 2014, former President Barack Obama gave the unit the Congressional Gold Medal. Cavazos was given a second Distinguished Service Cross for commanding the 1st Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment in Vietnam.
“There is no better namesake for our installation than Richard E. Cavazos,” said Lt. Gen. Sean Bernabe, commanding general of the III Armored Corps, headquartered at Fort Cavazos.
“Let his name and all that he represents inspire us all every single day to live up to his legacy as a warrior, as a soldier's soldier, as a master trainer, as a military innovator, as a coach and mentor, and as a humble servant leader,” Bernabe added.
The fort, originally named after Confederate General John Bell Hood, is home to the 1st Cavalry Division and is also used by the U.S. Reserve and National Guard for training. Around 34,500 military personnel and 48,500 family members are stationed at the base.
The move comes after the Department of Defense’s Naming Commission recommended renaming nine U.S. military installations that were named after members of the Confederacy.
The installations that will be renamed include Fort Bragg, renamed Fort Liberty, Fort AP Hill, renamed Fort Walker after the first woman surgeon in the Civil War Dr. Mary Edwards Walked, and Fort Polk, which will be renamed after Sgt. William Henry Johnson, a member of the Harlem Hellfighters during World War I.
"This is the first prominent military base that receives a renaming for a Latino. I believe that sends a powerful message that this will be a continuation of other naming opportunities for other Latinos,” said President and CEO of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Ramiro Cavazos, whose father was cousin to General Cavazos.