More than 21 years of service in the U.S. Army has earned a local resident El Paso County's inaugural "Veteran of the Year" award.
Leo Martinez will be honored at a ceremony from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. on Oct. 12 at the county's veterans monument in Bear Creek Regional Park at 2002 Creek Crossing St.
Martinez served from 1970 to 1993, holding titles including infantry senior sergeant, administrative specialist and command sergeant major. The New Mexico native's military career took him to Korea, Fort Lewis in Washington, Germany and Fort Carson.
As a volunteer for the 4th Judicial District's Veterans Trauma Court, he later recruited and trained other veterans to guide those going through the court.
"Leo is truly devoted to helping each and every veteran he works with to ensure they are successful in their lives," District Attorney Dan May said in a statement. "If I could clone Leo we would have success in every problem solving court."
The county's Veteran Service Office developed criteria for the award after former county commissioner Sallie Clark offered the idea as a way to honor veterans in the community.
Contact Rachel Riley: 636-0108