Three National Guard Soldiers Receive Purple Heart Medals - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

Three National Guard Soldiers Receive Purple Heart Medals

Posted: Updated:

Phoenix, AZ-Three Arizona Army National Guard members received Purple Heart medals over the weekend.

The soldiers served in the same company, but all three were injured in separate incidents during their deployment to Afghanistan last year.

During the Purple Heart ceremony, they reunited with their fellow soldiers and friends from their unit.

Private First Class Gino Duran of Phoenix was clearing a route for a convoy when his vehicle ran over an improvised explosive device last September.

Gino Duran was knocked unconscious.

"You hear the boom. I woke up, couldn’t really see. I had blurred vision, ears ringing, couldn’t really hear anything," he said.

Gino was diagnosed with a mild traumatic brain injury.

His wife Ruth, had just given birth to their first child, Elizabeth right before he deployed, 5 months earlier.

"When they told me what was going on in my head I was thinking ‘Oh my God,’" said Ruth.

Gino was on a 9-month deployment to Afghanistan with 90 other members of the 819th Engineer Company.

Two other soldiers, Specialist Leif Skoog of Phoenix, and Gino’s best friend Specialist Antonio Medrano of Yuma, were injured in separate incidents.

On Saturday, all three were awarded the Purple Heart at a ceremony at Camp Navajo near flagstaff where they were reunited with their unit.

"Actually, getting presented the award yesterday to be recognized for it was amazing," said Gino.

"I know what they went through wasn’t easy, and transition to come back try to get back to civilian life isn’t easy," said Ruth.

Gino says while he never wanted to be injured, he says, the award brings honor to his family.

Two of Gino's brothers served in the Army.

His older brother Hector just finished training with the Army Reserve when he was hit and killed by a drunk driver in 2004.

"He’s my biggest inspiration. I wish he was here to see me," said Gino.

  • Spotlight StoriesMore>>

  • New Jersey Sues Over Florida Pizza Shop Logo

    New Jersey Sues Over Florida Pizza Shop Logo

    Friday, July 25 2014 11:00 PM EDT2014-07-26 03:00:55 GMT
    The New Jersey Turnpike Authority wants a Florida pizza shop to pay a big toll for using a logo similar to the iconic Garden State Parkway's green and yellow signs.
    The New Jersey Turnpike Authority wants a Florida pizza shop to pay a big toll for using a logo similar to the iconic Garden State Parkway's green and yellow signs.
  • Man Left In McDonald’s Bathroom As A Baby Looking For Mother

    Man Left In McDonald’s Bathroom As A Baby Looking For Mother

    Friday, July 25 2014 10:58 PM EDT2014-07-26 02:58:52 GMT
    A local man left in a McDonald’s bathroom as a newborn has been using social media to search for his birth mother, and he may be getting closerDavid Volk managed to track down the woman who found him in that Newark, New Jersey McDonalds more than three decades ago!That woman, Wilhelimenia Dinkins, now lives in Houston.David found her on Facebook.Now he hopes that will lead to his birth mother.Our Fox station in Houston spoke to Wilhelimenia on Friday.“It was just so unusual to know that he we...
    A local man left in a McDonald’s bathroom as a newborn has been using social media to search for his birth mother, and he may be getting closerDavid Volk managed to track down the woman who found him in that Newark, New Jersey McDonalds more than three decades ago!That woman, Wilhelimenia Dinkins, now lives in Houston.David found her on Facebook.Now he hopes that will lead to his birth mother.Our Fox station in Houston spoke to Wilhelimenia on Friday.“It was just so unusual to know that he we...
  • Rape Charges Exonerated After Man Serves 12-Year Sentence

    Rape Charges Exonerated After Man Serves 12-Year Sentence

    Friday, July 25 2014 9:27 PM EDT2014-07-26 01:27:27 GMT
    After spending 12-years in prison for a crime he didn't commit, a Texas man is exonerated and has his named cleared of all charges.
    After spending 12-years in prison for a crime he didn't commit, a Texas man is exonerated and has his named cleared of all charges.
Powered by WorldNow

KTTV FOX 11
1999 S. Bundy Dr.
Los Angeles CA 90025

Main: (310) 584-2000
News Tips? (310) 584-2025

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices