1LT Daren M. Hidalgo, 24, was Killed in Action February 20, 2011 while serving his country in Afghanistan. Daren attended Kettle Moraine Middle School and High School and was a member of the school band and wrestled there. He graduated from Pennsylvania’s Dallastown Area High School in 2005 where he was a championship wrestler, National Honor Society Member, and a trumpeter in the school marching band. Daren was accepted to the prestigious United States Military Academy (USMA) at West Point, NY. He excelled at the Academy, serving as G-4 Company Commander during his senior year. In the Army he completed numerous courses to include the extremely challenging Ranger School. Earning his coveted Ranger Tab was one of the many proud moments of his short career. Daren was assigned to 3rd platoon, Ghostrider Company, 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment, Vilseck, Germany.
Deployed to the Maiwand District of Afghanistan in October 2010, Daren executed his duties and responsibilities to perfection. Throughout numerous combat engagements he gained a reputation in the Squadron that was second to none. Daren’s greatest talent was his ability to maintain a positive attitude and inspire each of his Soldiers to be great. He earned posthumously the award of a Bronze Star and the Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster.
Daren was known for his winning smile and engaging personality, a jokester and prankster always looking to cheer people up around him. His strength of character and empathy endeared him to all who met him. Daren is sadly missed by his parents: Jorge & Andrea, siblings : Jared (Jenny) Hidalgo, Miles (Caroline) Hidalgo, Carmen (Mike) Spellman, nephews: Wade, Carson, Finley, Maddox, Brody, and Wyatt and his nieces : Lexie and Mary. He was preceded in death by his nephew Cale Harrison Hidalgo. Daren’s life and legacy will never be forgotten. All of us fortunate enough to have known him will cherish his memory, love and friendship.
Daren requested that in case of his death a scholarship be created and funds be provided to support wounded soldier causes. We established the Daren M. Hidalgo Memorial Fund to accomplish Daren’s wishes. We have presented a $5,000 scholarship to a deserving high school student since 2012. Family and friends have also held numerous charity events which have generated over $100,000 in funds to support several charities.
Daren was the embodiment of an American spirit of service to a higher calling than self. The Hidalgo family and friends sustain his legacy through the support of the Daren M. Hidalgo Memorial Fund. Further information can be viewed at www.rememberdaren.com