Army National Guard Veteran John R. D’Araujo Jr. is today's Veteran of the Day.

Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Army National Guard Veteran John R. D’Araujo Jr., who served during the Vietnam War.

John R. D’Araujo Jr. was born in 1943 in Pepeekeo, Hawaii, a small town on the Big Island. He graduated from St. Joseph High School and later earned a bachelor’s in political science from the State University of New York. D’Araujo enlisted in the Hawaii National Guard in 1960.

In 1963, D’Araujo was commissioned a second lieutenant after completing officer candidate school. He was assigned to the 29th Infantry Brigade as the executive officer for Battery B, 1st Battalion, 298th Artillery Group, which was a Nike Hercules air defense battery – an assignment that involved working with surface-to-air-missiles. The Hawaii National Guard’s 298th Artillery Group was the first National Guard unit to adopt the Nike Hercules missile, becoming operational on-site in early 1960. This artillery group was very successful and recorded the longest interception of a target by a Nike Hercules missile.

In 1969, D’Araujo was sent to the Mekong Delta in Vietnam for nine months and was assigned as the commander of a mobile advisory team. When he returned to Hawaii, he was assigned as the tactical operations officer for the 298th Artillery Group. During the next few years, D’Araujo worked in logistics and supply, intelligence, and operations and training.

In 1978, D’Araujo was made the commander of the Hawaii National Guard Troop Command. He graduated from the Army War College in 1980 and was promoted to colonel in 1981. He then assumed the duties of the U.S. property and fiscal officer for the Guam National Guard. He later became the senior Army National Guard advisor to the commanding general of the U.S. Mobilization and Readiness Region III and completed two assignments in Washington, D.C., at the National Guard Bureau. In 1987, D’Araujo was appointed as the assistant adjutant general of the Hawaii Army National Guard, and in 1993, he became the director of the Army National Guard.

D’Araujo retired in 1996 after completing 32 years of service. He was a high-ranking Filipino American in the military and received many awards, including a Legion of Merit, a Bronze Star Medal and a Meritorious Service Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters. In 2001, D’Araujo was appointed to the position of assistant director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) by President Bush, working in the office of response and recovery. He has also worked in consulting. He is married with two children.

Thank you for your service!

Nominate a Veteran for #VeteranOfTheDay

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

Writer: Kimberly Kassis

Editors: Theresa Lyon, Annabelle Colton

Researchers: Giacomo Ferrari, Patrick E. Woods

Graphic artist: Kiki Kelley

By DME Interns

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Published on Jul. 6, 2022

Estimated reading time is 2.8 min.

Views to date: 379


  1. Senior Veterans Care Network July 12, 2022 at 4:10 pm

    Thank you for your service John R. D’Araujo Jr.

  2. Theresa Lyon July 9, 2022 at 8:38 pm

    Thank you, Mr. Hickman, for your kind words. It was my pleasure to help edit this write-up. Here’s wishing you a wonderful day!
    Theresa Lyon

  3. Jeff Hickman July 7, 2022 at 8:07 pm

    My contact info:

  4. Jeff Hickman July 7, 2022 at 8:06 pm

    Aloha- I am the State PAO with the Hawaii National Guard. Can you put me in touch with any of the writers or editors on this story? We would like to get in contact with BG Ret D’Araujo as well. This piece was really well done!!!!!!

Comments are closed.

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