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Local organization puts finishing touches on war memorial

NEW HANOVER COUNTY--A local organization put the finishing touches on a war memorial today. It's called the Fallen Soldiers Memorial. The group, Step Up For Soldiers, built the site at the National Guard Armory off Kerr Avenue. The memorial honors soldiers from the 30th battalion unit who died in the Iraq war. Two of them worked here in Wilmington at the armory's battalion headquarters and two were from the alpha company in Jacksonville. Organizer Thomas Russell says the memorial means a lot to him. "It's kind of a mixed blessing, it's been over two and a half years since we started this, it's nice to see this come to an end but it's been a large part of my life in the last two and half years," he said. Organizers have raised about $67,000 for the memorial. A ceremony will be held in honor of the fallen soldiers on June 21 at 10:00 a.m. The event is open to the public. If you would like to donate money to this memorial, you can visit

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