Rank and organization:
Private First Class, U.S.
Army, Company E, 142d Infantry, 36th Infantry Division.
Place and date:
Near Mertzwiller, France, 15 March 1945.
Entered service at:
El Paso, Tex.
75, 5 September 1945.
He advanced with a platoon along a wooded road until stopped by heavy enemy machinegun
fire. As the rest of the unit took cover, he made a 1-man frontal assault on a strongpoint
and captured 8 enemy soldiers. When the platoon resumed its advance and was subjected to
fire from a second emplacement beyond an extensive minefield, Pvt. Herrera again moved
forward, disregarding the danger of exploding mines, to attack the position. He stepped on
a mine and had both feet severed; but, despite intense pain and unchecked loss of blood,
he pinned down the enemy with accurate rifle fire while a friendly squad captured the
enemy gun by skirting the minefield and rushing in from the flank. The magnificent
courage, extraordinary heroism, and willing self-sacrifice displayed by Pvt. Herrera
resulted in the capture of 2 enemy strongpoints and the taking of 8 prisoners.