Press Release

Rep. Henry Cuellar announces acceptance of student to the U.S. Naval Academy

Raymundo “Ray” Hernandez III from Sharyland High School was accepted to the Service Academy

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Washington, May 22, 2013 | comments

To view Congressman Henry Cuellar's congratulatory message click here.

Congressman Henry Cuellar, D-Laredo, announced and congratulated Sharyland High School senior Raymundo "Ray" Hernandez, III, son of Diana and Raymundo Hernandez, Jr., on his recent acceptance to the United States Naval Academy for the 2013-2014 academic school year.

"I take the responsibility of nominating students into military service academies seriously," Congressman Cuellar said. "During the extensive nomination process, Ray had the kind of impressive resume and moral character I look for in nominees. Ray demonstrated his leadership skills throughout his involvement with the community. His academic strengths, moral character, and commitment to duty are exactly what our military service members need to succeed in today's challenging world. I offer my sincere congratulations to Ray and his family and wish him the best in their service to our country. I have no doubt that he will represent our 28th Congressional District of Texas with great pride and success."

Congressman Cuellar provides service academy nominations as one step in the military academies' application process. To earn a nomination, students participate in a lengthy review process that evaluates their academic history, leadership skills, extracurricular activities, and personal essays. This is the second year in a row Sharyland High School sends a student to a military service academy - Paul O'Donnell received acceptance to the United States Military Academy at West Point one year ago.

Ray first learned about the military academies in sixth grade while watching television with his father. After conducting research, he began obtaining Navy posters (still hanging in his room to date) and worked diligently toward the goal of being accepted to the Academy. His inspiration came from past family members who have served in the military - most notably his grandfather, Raymundo Hernandez, Sr., a World War II veteran and Mexican National who obtained his United States citizenship during his service.

"Being part of the generation of children who witnessed 9/11 gave me an early perspective of the value of our American freedom; this along with a strong military influence from family and friends provided years of inspiration to protect that freedom. After sixth grade I realized that the service academies would help me achieve that goal."

Ray, named after his grandfather, is ranked among the top of his class. A marching band member and varsity baseball player, he volunteers his time regularly to help the youth at Saint Paul's Catholic Church, and is involved in other community activities including the Challenged Sportsman of America Organization and the annual Catholic Youth Renovation Project in Mission, Texas.

Alexis Gallegos, from Congressman Cuellar's district office in Mission attended the Senior Awards Assembly at Sharyland High School on Wednesday to present Ray with a Congressional Certificate of Recognition on behalf of Congressman Cuellar.


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