Born on June 30, 1957, in Quebradillas, Puerto Rico
Died on Jan. 2, 2005 in Shindand, Afghanistan
A native of Aguada, Puerto Rico, Pedro enlisted in the Army in February 1986 as an automated logistical specialist. He graduated from the Special Forces Qualification Course in 1990 and was assigned to the 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne) and soon after deployed in support of operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. In 1994, he deployed to Haiti for 7 months in support of Operation Uphold Democracy. Pedro deployed to Colombia in the mid-1990’s and bonded with the Colombian forces. He always thought of other people before himself. At the age of 40, he decided he wanted to join the U.S. Army Parachute Team, the Golden Knights. Failure was not an option for him. Pedro always scored among the highest on physical fitness tests even though he insisted on being graded by standards set for 17 to 21-year-old soldiers. Called Poppy by his fellow soldiers, they watched him do his physical training that put the younger guys to shame. Some even said jokingly that his intensity would have put a 20-year old in a coma. In 1999, he was assigned to the Golden Knights. He completed over 300 static line and 4,000 free fall parachute jumps. He returned to Special Forces in 2002. Pedro deployed to Afghanistan as a detachment operations and intelligence sergeant assigned to the 1st Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne). On January 1, 2005, he was struck by small arms fire while his unit was conducting an offensive operation in Herat province. He was pronounced dead the following day after his medical evacuation from the scene. Pedro was awarded numerous medals and decorations during his 18 years serving, including the Bronze Star with Valor device, the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the Army Achievement Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, the Joint Meritorious Unit Award, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Southwest Asia Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Armed Forces Service Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the Kuwait Liberation Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge with 2nd Award Star, the Master Parachutist Badge, the Master Military Free Fall Badge and the Special Forces Tab. His wife and daughter survived him.