Texan's sacrifice in Vietnam earns Medal of Honor
August 21, 1968
On this day in 1968, Staff Sgt. Marvin Young died near Ben Cui, Vietnam. The native of Alpine, Texas, had graduated from Permian Basin High school and attended Odessa Junior College. He enlisted in the army in 1966. On August 21, 1968, he was leading a patrol of Company C, Fifth Infantry, Twenty-fifth Infantry Division when they were attacked by a large force of North Vietnamese. When the squad leader was killed, Young assumed command and repeatedly exposed himself to enemy fire, while encouraging his men. Despite orders to pull back, he remained behind to assist several of his men who were unable to withdraw. He received a critical head injury. Refusing assistance, he still stayed to cover the withdrawal and was killed. His parents were presented the Medal of Honor at the White House on April 7, 1970, by President Richard Nixon. Marvin Young is buried in the Sunset Cemetery at Odessa, Texas.
"La Musa Texana" dies in Laredo
August 21, 1910
On this day in 1910, poet and political leader Sara Estela Ramírez died in Laredo at about the age of twenty-nine, twelve years after arriving in Texas from her native Mexico. In Laredo, she taught Spanish and became a prominent supporter of the Partido Liberal Mexicano, the most progressive political party in the era leading up to the Mexican Revolution, and a close friend of PLM leader Ricardo Flores Magón. She probably published most of her poetry and essays in Spanish-language newspapers such as La Crónica, and starting in 1901 became the publisher of two papers, La Corregidora and Aurora. Her journalism was apparently tied to her work with Regeneración y Concordia, a feminist organization to which she belonged, and she is considered one of the founders of Mexican feminism. Twenty-one of her poems and essays, all published between 1908 and 1910, constitute the body of her known work. She was eulogized in La Crónica by Jovita Idar, who bestowed on her the nickname "La Musa Texana."
Antisuffrage activist dies
August 21, 1928
On this day in 1928, antisuffragist Pauline Wells died of heart disease in Marlin. Wells, the daughter of Emma Henrietta Butler and Joseph Kleiber, was born in Brownsville in 1863. At the age of seventeen she married James B. Wells, who became a powerful South Texas political boss. Supported by her husband, she began working against the woman suffrage movement as early as 1912. Three years later she argued that suffrage was "identified with feminism, sex antagonism, socialism, anarchy and Mormonism." In 1916 she became the first president of the Texas Association Opposed to Woman Suffrage and in 1919 headed a drive by Texas "antis" to hold off ratification of a state constitutional amendment giving women the right to vote in the general election; their victory proved short-lived, however, as Texans soon ratified the federal Nineteenth Amendment.
posted by Jeff - 8.21.2011 The Texas State Historical Association