The N.C. National Guard will commemorate the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II with a ceremony Friday honoring 16 members of the 30th Infantry Division.
Six soldiers from the division were awarded the Medal of Honor for their service in World War II. Then-General Dwight Eisenhower's staff ranked the 30th as the top infantry division in the European theater.
Its contemporaries still honor the division.
"The 30th never lost a piece of ground. It always accomplished the mission it was tasked, and in many cases was just outstanding on combat action," said Lieutenant Colonel Wes Morrison, executive officer for the North Carolina National Guard's 30th Armored Combat Brigade combat team.
"We in the 30th, we're extremely aware of our history and our heritage, and these are our heroes," Morrison said, "and so to have the opportunity to be with them face-to-face and have a connection just means the world to us."
Morrison says N.C. Commerce Secretary John Skvarla will speak at Friday's ceremony, and all 16 World War II veterans will receive wooden plaques carved by Guardsmen.