Taken under fire by an enemy automatic weapon and hit in the right shoulder and chest as he lifted his arm to throw, Lopez fell backward and dropped the deadly grenade. After a moment, he turned and dragged his body forward in an effort to retrieve the grenade and throw it. In critical condition from pain and loss of blood, and unable to grasp the hand grenade firmly enough to hurl it, he chose to sacrifice himself rather than endanger the lives of his men, and with a sweeping motion of his wounded right arm, cradled the grenade under him and absorbed the full impact of the explosion. He did not survive the blast.
President Harry S. Truman presented the Medal of Honor posthumously to Lopez’s parents in a ceremony at the White House in 1951. Lopez is the only Hispanic-American graduate of the academy to receive the Medal of Honor.
In 1999, Florida dedicated the Baldomero Lopez State Veterans Nursing Home.