WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - The city of Wilmington held a service over the weekend to remember the 72nd anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor.
While the battles of the second world war took place thousands of miles away from Wilmington, the Port City played a major role in the supporting our American troops on foreign soils.
The Wilmington Shipyard is where over 200 liberty ships were built. The area where Williston School is now located was once the site of one of three POW camps in the city, and the historic Hannah Block Community Arts Center is where a USO was located.
Now there is an effort to have the Port City designated as the first American World War Two City.
"With our Battleship, with our Revolutionary War sites like Moores Creek Battleground, Civil War sites like Fort Fisher, there is an enormous amount of military history in Wilmington, and southeastern North Carolina, so it makes sense that Wilmington would become a military history heritage tourism destination," said Wilbur Jones, a local World War Two historian.
Jones solicited the help of Congressman Mike McIntyre to get the effort underway. Last month, House Bill 2189, which includes the American World War Two designation, passed in the US House, by a 404 to 1 vote.
"The Secretary of Veterans Affairs can designate at least one per year, for that special designation, and we were excited about that and so were my colleagues in Congress felt like Wilmington was being recognized for its contributions, but this sets and example and gives an opportunity for other cities to be recognized in the months and years to come" said McIntyre.
The bill is in a Senate committee, as part of a much larger piece of legislation dealing with our veterans.
"I don't expect action before January, but this is such a win-win for not only the state of North Carolina, but for veterans, it is going to be very easy for Senators to vote overwhelming for this bill," said Jones.
Copyright 2013 WECT. All rights reserved.
322 Shipyard Boulevard