Jesse R. Acosta, born in East Los Angeles and raised in Santa Fe Springs he comes from humble beginnings. In December of 1975 at the age of 18 Jesse enlisted into the US Army. Soon after he graduated Basic Training and Infantry school (11B).
In May of 1976, Acosta was attached to 2/39th Infantry Division at Ft. Lewis Washington. In June of 1978 then a Corporal he was transferred to the 187th Combat Support Unit in Baumholder, Germany. In December of 1979 he earned his well deserved Sergeant stripes, he re-enlisted and reclassified as a Multi Channel Communications Operator (31M) at the School of Communications at Ft. Gordon, GA. In 1980, Acosta was assigned to HQ, HQ Battery 2/55th Air Defense Artillery out of Ft. Bliss, TX. He separated from the active military after completing his second contract November 15, 1982. He took a two year break then realized that it wasn’t time to throw in the towel and enlisted in the Army Reserve. He enlisted as a Sergeant and was signed to D Co. 14th Combat Engineers out of El Monte, CA. He was promoted to Staff Sergeant in 1986 and was assigned to the 349th General Hospital out of Los Angeles, CA. He was promoted to Sergeant First Class in 1991 and received the position of interim 1SG (1st Sergeant) from 1996-1998. In July of 1998 1SG Acosta was assigned to the 3rd BN (Battalion) 3/62nd with the 91st Training Support BN, out of Norco, CA where he was promoted to Master Sergeant. He only managed to stay one year before he was requested by name to return to the 349th General Hospital as their 1SG. Upon his return he attended Combat Medic School (91W) and graduated from the 1SG Academy. In June 2003, 1SG Acosta joined the Individual Ready Reserve program and remained there until he was called to active duty for Mobilization with the 376th AG BN DET. 4 (Adjutant General Battalion Detachment 4) June 2005.
The 376th AG BN DET. 4 mobilized in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom August 20, 2005. The unit was assigned to LSA (logistical support area) Anaconda in Balad, the largest support base in Iraq. 1SG Acosta received his hard-earned promotion to SGM (Sergeant Major) effective January 01, 2006. On January 16, 2006, SGM Acosta was wounded in a mortar attack on LSA Anaconda. The most severe of his injuries are the loss of sight in his right eye and the loss of vision in his left eye.
His Military education includes the Primary Leadership Development Course (PLDC), Basic Non Commissioned Officer Course (BNCOC), Advanced Non Commissioned Officer Course (ANOC), and the 1SG Academy. He also attended Infantry School (11B), Multi Channel Communications Operator School (31M) and Combat Medic School (91W).
SGM Acosta’s awards include the Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, (6) Army Commendation Medal, (3) Army Achievement Medals, (3) Army Good Conduct Medal, (6) Army Reserve Component Achievement Medal, (2) National Defense Service Medal, the Iraqi Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal with a Silver Hourglass and the “ M” device, the Army Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon with the number “3”, the Army Service Ribbon, the Army Overseas Service Ribbon, the Reserve Component Overseas Training Ribbon and the Combat Action Badge.