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Wilmington honors Montford Point Marines

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- The Wilmington Commission on African-American History will host a reception before tonight's City Council meeting to honor the Wilmington Chapter of the Montford Point Marines. The reception is from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at City Hall.

Five of the chapter's surviving recipients are scheduled to attend: Frances M. Hooper, James B. Wilson, Ivan LaBlanc, Howard Spencer and Wilson Thigpen.

The Montford Point Marines were the first African-Americans to serve in the US Marine Corps, beginning in World War II. They trained at Montford Point near Camp Lejeune.

Last month, approximately 400 surviving Montford Point Marines received the Congressional Gold Medal, which is the highest civilian award given by Congress.

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James B Wilson

The Hammer, James B. Wilson, was one of the greatest Marines in the early 50's. A drill sargent, he was a fine example of Marines at their finest.