Soldiers from the 1st Cavalry Division got a chance to experience authentic Hispanic food and dances Oct. 9, at the Howze Theater on post in celebration of the national Hispanic American Heritage Month Observance.

"The purpose of the event is to create awareness of the Hispanic and Latino community, and their significant contributions to the country and the Army," said Sgt. 1st Class Robert L. Bee, the Equal Opportunity Advisor for the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cav. Div..

The event was hosted by the 'Black Jack' Brigade and was open to all Soldiers from the 1st Cav. Div.

The event kicked off with traditional Hispanic food brought by vendors from the Killeen area.

Soldiers were given a ticket upon entering the theater and then instructed to leave the ticket stub with whichever vendor's food they enjoyed the most.

"The food was good and traditional," said Rio Grande, Puerto Rico native Staff Sgt. Jose Y. Resto, the Equal Opportunity Leader from the 1st Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd BCT, 1st Cav. Div.

After the food portion of the event was done, Soldiers were ushered into the theater where they had a chance to watch dancers from the Killeen Multi Ethnic Cultural & Arts Association perform traditional Hispanic dances. Performers of all ages took part in traditional dances originating from several different Hispanic countries.

Command Sgt. Maj. Fernando Rodriguezramos, an Isabela, Puerto Rico native and Commandant of the III Corps Noncommisioned Officers Academy, then took the stage and gave a speech discussing important issues pertaining to the Hispanic community.

Rodriguezramos speech hit on subjects like Hispanic values, the struggle to become Americans and the value of being role models to others.

"We have obligations to our communities to do everything we can to make them better," said Rodriguezramos.

After Rodriguezramos speech, the votes for the food vendors were tallied and awards were given to all who participated, with first place going to Mercado Azteca from Killeen.

The day wrapped up with the chaplain giving a closing prayer.

"They did a good job covering everything," said Brownsville, Texas native Staff Sgt. Veronica Tovar, a communication's security custodian from the 2nd BCT Headquarters and Headquarters Company.

And with that, this year's observance of Hispanic American Heritage month ends. But, everyday Soldiers can still see the great impact that Hispanic American have made on not only the Army, but the country itself.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16