During Hispanic Heritage Month, today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Marine Corps Veteran Queta Rodriguez, who served in Somalia and Afghanistan.
Growing up in San Antonio, Texas, Queta Rodriguez’s family came from modest circumstances. Her two older brothers had joined the Navy; one was a Navy corpsman, stationed with the Marines. He suggested she enlist with the Marines because of her mental and physical acumen along with her strong character.
Rodriguez enlisted in December 1991 and went to Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island for basic training. Shortly after completing bootcamp and arriving to her first duty station at Camp Pendleton, California, Rodriguez deployed to Somalia in support of Operation Restore Hope, which oversaw humanitarian aid in Somalia during the Somali civil war. In July 1998, Rodriguez joined the Marine Enlisted Commissioning Education Program and attended Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. During this period, she attended the University of Maryland and earned a bachelor’s degree in government and politics. In June 2001, Rodriguez commissioned as a second lieutenant. She later deployed to Camp Leatherneck in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
Rodriguez’s final assignment was as a manpower operations officer at U.S. Marine Corps Forces Central Command (USMARCENT), where she deployed multiple times in support of Marine Forces throughout the Middle East. She retired as a captain in January 2012.
After leaving the military, Rodriguez became the regional director in Texas for the nonprofit organization FourBlock, a Veteran outreach program that assists Veterans in building professional career networks. As the foundation’s Texas program manager, she helps oversee that Veterans in Texas receive valuable resources and education when applying for careers in the private or public sector. Rodriguez is proud to continue serving the nation’s Veteran community with the same values taught to her during her 20 years of service.
Thank you for your service!
Do you want to light up the face of a special Veteran? Have you been wondering how to tell your Veteran they are special to you? VA’s #VeteranOfTheDay social media feature is an opportunity to highlight your Veteran and his/her service.
It’s easy to nominate a Veteran. Visit our blog post about nominating to learn how to create the best submission.
Veterans History Project
This #VeteranOfTheDay profile was created with interviews submitted to the Veterans History Project. The project collects, preserves, and makes accessible the personal accounts of American war Veterans so that future generations may hear directly from Veterans and better understand the realities of war. Find out more at http://www.loc.gov/vets/.
Writer: Guillermo Osorio
Editor: Katherine Berman and Annabelle Colton
Fact checker: Michael Macias and Lia Sansoucy
Graphic artist: Grace Yang