Fort Hood honors decorated soldier with dedication of new $22 million training center

Posted: 4:36 PM, Jan 09, 2017
Updated: 2018-11-03 19:19:45Z
Fort Hood honors decorated soldier with dedication of new $22 million training center

At 15-years-old, Michael Pena's father signed up and joined the United States Army in 1940. 

Master Sgt. Mike Pena was stationed at Fort Hood at one point throughout his short career and deployed with the First Cavalry Division overseas. 

"Growing up it was a little tough being without your Dad, but when you read the citation, you know that because of him there were children that had fathers," Michael Pena said.   

On Sept. 5th, 1950, Master Sgt. Pena's platoon was forced to withdraw after an intense battle in Korea. 

Master Sgt. Pena stayed behind to man a machine gun to cover his troops. He single-handedly held back the enemy until the early hours of the following morning when his position was overrun, and he was killed in action. 

"Dad, I miss you," Pena added. 

Michael Pena said he is proud to carry out his father's legacy through the Pena last name that he and his boys share. 

"They all have a picture or plaque in their homes just to remind them that they came from some real good stock," Pena said.  

Early Tuesday morning, a new training support center was dedicated to Master Sgt. Pena on Fort Hood. 

The $22 million center will serve all soldiers on post to assist them in field exercises and simulation training. 

"It's an honor for the Pena family to be a part of and have this memento as a part of our livelihood and part of our family legacy," Rick Pena, nephew of Master Sgt. Pena, said. 

Since his honorable passing, Master Sgt. Pena has been awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor  for his heroic and selfless actions.

"I guess now that I'm older, the sacrifice was worth it," Michael Pena said. 

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