US

US honors Puerto Ricans who fought, died in segregated unit

  • Puerto Rico war veterans await for their Congressional Gold Medal at a ceremony in San Juan, Puerto Rico on Wednesday, April 27, 2016. The veterans were part of the 65th Infantry Regiment known as the Borinqueneers, which faced discrimination and was the last segregated unit in combat. (AP Photo/Danica Coto)

    Puerto Rico war veterans await for their Congressional Gold Medal at a ceremony in San Juan, Puerto Rico on Wednesday, April 27, 2016. The veterans were part of the 65th Infantry Regiment known as the Borinqueneers, which faced discrimination and was the last segregated unit in combat. (AP Photo/Danica Coto)  (The Associated Press)

  • Puerto Rico war veterans await for their Congressional Gold Medal at a ceremony in San Juan, Puerto Rico on Wednesday, April 27, 2016. The veterans were part of the 65th Infantry Regiment known as the Borinqueneers, which faced discrimination and was the last segregated unit in combat. (AP Photo/Danica Coto)

    Puerto Rico war veterans await for their Congressional Gold Medal at a ceremony in San Juan, Puerto Rico on Wednesday, April 27, 2016. The veterans were part of the 65th Infantry Regiment known as the Borinqueneers, which faced discrimination and was the last segregated unit in combat. (AP Photo/Danica Coto)  (The Associated Press)

  • Puerto Rico war veterans walk during a ceremony to award them their Congressional Gold Medals at a ceremony in San Juan, Puerto Rico on Wednesday, April 27, 2016. The veterans were part of the 65th Infantry Regiment known as the Borinqueneers, which faced discrimination and was the last segregated unit in combat. (AP Photo/Danica Coto)

    Puerto Rico war veterans walk during a ceremony to award them their Congressional Gold Medals at a ceremony in San Juan, Puerto Rico on Wednesday, April 27, 2016. The veterans were part of the 65th Infantry Regiment known as the Borinqueneers, which faced discrimination and was the last segregated unit in combat. (AP Photo/Danica Coto)  (The Associated Press)

The U.S. government is honoring dozens of Puerto Rican veterans who faced discrimination and waited decades to be recognized for fighting several wars under the last segregated unit in combat.

U.S. Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert McDonald traveled to the American territory to hand out the Congressional Gold Medal to veterans on Wednesday. He said the service of the 65th Infantry Regiment known as the Borinqueneers is legendary.

The Borinqueneers were a Hispanic unit segregated from other soldiers as were the black Tuskegee Airmen and Navajo Code Talkers. But it was not until this year that they received the highest civilian award given by Congress.

Resident Commissioner Pedro Pierluisi said Latinos have been able to integrate themselves in the U.S. military thanks in part to the Borinqueneers.