Medal of Honor vet helps promote soldier

Tibor "Ted" Rubin, left, with newly promoted Staff Sgt. Sammuel Yudin at the JFTB. Photo courtesy of Laura Herzog

Seal Beach resident Samuel Yudin had the honor on Monday to have Medal of Honor recipient Tibor Rubin pin his new rank on him at the Joint Forces Training Base in Los Alamitos.

The ceremony was held on the base as Yudin was promoted to a Sergeant First Class.

Yudin said he was proud of his promotion and grateful that Mr. Rubin could participate.

Tibor “Ted” Rubin, who was born June 18, 1929, is a Hungarian Holocaust survivor who immigrated to the United States in 1948. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions in the Korean War by President George W. Bush on September 23, 2005.

Rubin is a resident of Garden Grove. He was repeatedly nominated for various medals and awards, but was overlooked because of alleged anti-Semitism by a superior. According to the Washington Post, “in affidavits filed in support of Rubin’s nomination, fellow soldiers said their sergeant was an anti-Semite who gave Rubin dangerous assignments, apparently in hopes of getting him killed.”

Rubin was born in Pásztó, a Hungarian town with a Jewish population of 120 families, the son of a shoemaker and one of six children. At age 13, he was transported to the Mauthausen concentration camp in Austria and liberated two years later by American troops. Both his parents and one of his sisters perished in the Holocaust. Rubin came to the United States in 1948, settled in New York and worked first as a shoemaker and then as a butcher.

In 1949, he tried to enlist in the U.S. Army, both as an assumed shortcut to citizenship and, he hoped, to attend the Army’s butcher school in Chicago.

Knowing hardly any English, he failed the language test, but tried again in 1950 and passed.

Medal of Honor vet helps promote soldier