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Long-lost soldier looking for descendants

John Minton, a retired U.S. Marine sergeant who lives in Red Bluff, contacted us this week because he is trying to get more information about France Silva, a Hayward native who fought in the Boxer Rebellion and was shot in the leg on July 1, 1900. He was supposedly the first Hispanic-American person to be awarded the Medal of Honor.

But very little is known about him, says Minton, who for three years has been trying to research Silva’s story.

Silva died in 1951 and was buried alone in Corning, which is south of Red Bluff.

“I don’t know his wife’s maiden name. I figure, if I can get the maiden name, I can look for descendants,” Minton said. “Nobody evens knows where that Medal of Honor is at.”

If you think you’re related to Private Silva or know anything about him, you can contact Minton at usmcmike3zero@sbcglobal.net or (530) 840-0345.