Family hopes Trump administration will honor hero - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Family hopes Trump administration will honor hero

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) — Sgt. Raphael Peralta was fighting in Fallujah on Nov. 15, 2004 when he opened a door and was greeted by gunfire. 
 
The 25-year-old Marine from San Diego was hit multiple times by bullets from an AK-47. 
 
To Sgt. Peralta's sisters, what happened next - comes as no surprise. 

"He actually died, living what his passion was," said Peralta's sister Icela. 

The insurgents who shot Sgt. Peralta, threw a hand grenade in his direction hoping to kill the other Marines who were with him. But Sgt. Peralta reportedly pulled the grenade under his body - sacrificing his life to save his fellow marines. 

Sgt. Peralta's heroism, not only earned him the Navy Cross, but he also had a destroyer named after him. And now San Diego Congressman Duncan Hunter has asked new Secretary of Defense James Mattis to consider Sgt. Peralta for the military's highest honor - the Medal of Honor. 

Sgt. Peralta has been considered for this honor before, but at least three previous defense secretaries have rejected that request, because of questions surrounding what really happened the day he died. 

A review panel raised concerns that Sgt. Peralta was too injured from the bullets to consciously grab the grenade and place it under his body. 

"That doubt - it really hurts, because we know who he was and he never would doubt to grab that grenade," said Icela Peralta. "That's the hard part." 

Sgt. Peralta's family appreciates Congressman Hunter's push for the Medal of Honor, which they say will happen when it's supposed to. But what they're even more thankful for is your support. 

"I feel my family has been able to survive through this journey because of the support we get from people," said Sgt. Peralta's sister Karen.

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