The Marine Corps Times reports that Rep. Duncan Hunter,
R-Calif., a lawmaker who is leading a campaign to see fallen Marine
Sgt. Rafael Peralta receive the Medal of Honor, sent more
supporting evidence to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel. According to
the newspaper, Hunter sent the defense chief new eyewitness
accounts of Peralta’s actions during the battle that killed
Peralta was killed in combat in Fallujah, Iraq, on Nov. 15,
2004, when he covered a grenade with his body to protect fellow
Marines. Corps officials recommended that he receive the Medal of
Honor, but then-Defense Secretary Robert Gates, according to
the Marine Corps Times report, questioned whether Peralta knowingly
acted to absorb the blast, since he had also taken a ricocheting
rifle round to the head. Peralta ultimately received the Navy Cross
Dwight Willliams, from Juniperro Serra High School in Gardena, Calif., and linebacker for the 2014 U.S. Army All-American Bowl West Team, renders a salute in honor of all members of the Armed Forces during a team practice at Blossom Athletic Center in San Antonio. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Peter J. Berardi
Earning an invitation to the U.S. Army All-American Bowl is a
prestigious honor reserved for the best high school football
players in the country. While only the strongest are chosen to wear
the Army colors, the players have their own reasons for traveling
to San Antonio to play in the game.
Some players choose to participate in the All-American Bowl over
other bowls because it is the top high school football game pitting
the best players from the East against the best from the West,
while others see it as an opportunity to honor those who have
served in the nation's largest fighting force – the Army.
One West team player made his decision based on how well the
event is put together and the length of time the players get to
spend with each other.
“It's an original bowl, I felt it was the most well put together
of all of them,” said Bijhon Jackson, from El Dorado High School in
El Dorado, Ariz., and defensive lineman for the West Team.
One of Jackson’s teammates based his decision on entirely
“I chose to play in the Army Bowl because [it means] a lot more.
It's not just for you and your family and the honor of being an
All-American, it's for the Army,” said Dwight Willliams, from
Juniperro Serra High School in Gardena, Calif., and linebacker for
the West Team. “They shed their blood and give me the opportunity
to out here and do this and they put their life on the line and I
just want to honor them.”
The 14th annual U.S. All-American Bowl will be broadcast live on
NBC at 1 p.m. EST on Jan. 4.
The Rulon brothers are no strangers to constantly being around
each other, considering they are twins who both live in the Kansas
City, Mo., area.
So nothing changed when Adam and Jonathan deployed to
The Rulons, both staff sergeants serving as squad leaders in the
1438th Multi Role Bridging Company, Missouri National Guard,
deployed back in late August, in charge of soldiers whose mission
deals with the transition of bridge parts throughout
“Being a twin, we constantly have people confusing us; even
people in our own squads will come up to us with issues, and they
totally don’t even know it,” Adam said, laughingly. “We have a
little fun here and like to confuse people sometimes, but it’s all
in good nature.”
Both soldiers are based out of Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan,
but Adam works with his squad up in Bagram, while Adam works down
south at Camp Leatherneck.
Although they have only spent a couple of weeks actually
together, even during the holiday season, having family overseas
has been nothing but positive.
“Being here together is great,” Adam said. “We constantly are
pushing each other and holding each other accountable. It is just
nice to have family here, having your brother watch out for
The Rulons' story continues