ERIE COUNTY, N.Y. (WIVB)–Brian Higgins honored a local Korean War veteran Sunday. The congressman awarded Carmelo Lopez-Febus the Congressional Gold Medal.

Carmelo served in the Borinqueneers, a segregated Puerto Rican infantry regiment. Higgins says it’s important to recognize the role Hispanic Americans have played in defending the country.
“The congressional gold medal is the highest civilian award to Americans who do great things for our history and our culture.”

Carmelo has earned several awards, including the national defense service medal.