WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - Twenty-nine World War II veterans were honored in a commemorative book this Veterans Day.
Answering the Call: A Story of Everyday Valor tells the stories of each veteran who called Plantation Village retirement community in Porters Neck home.
Since that time, eight veterans have passed away.
During the community’s fifth annual Veterans Day celebration on the USS North Carolina, veterans and families were presented copies of the book during a brief ceremony and luncheon.
Arthur Milne served in the U.S. Army during WWII but laughed when asked about being part of the “greatest generation.” He doesn’t see himself that way.
“We did what we had to do. When you have to do something, you do it and everybody felt that way so the country was united, and that was the important thing -- that everybody felt the same way about it,” Milne said. “The real heroes aren’t alive today. I think they should be honored. They’re the ones. It could’ve easily been everyone here could have lost their lives too. So, we were the lucky ones. The heroes are dead.”
Leslie Wanzer’s father served in WWII and lives at Plantation Village, where her sister, Becky Grogan works as the marketing coordinator. Grogan co-authored Answering the Call.
“It is a wonderful way to honor the veterans and keep them in the family so that we can keep our grandchildren, and have that available to keep this, the memories of the veterans of WWII alive,” Wanzer said.
Active duty marines and sailors from Air Station New River and Camp Lejeune volunteered their time to escort the veterans on and off the battleship.
“It’s more of an honor to be here for us, because they laid the pathway for what we have right now as Americans, so it is a true pleasure,” said United States Marine Corp Major Daniel Emmetson. “Unfortunately, we’re losing our World War II veterans. So, its keeping the memory of those individuals alive and that’s the biggest thing is making sure they are never forgotten."
You can find more information on the book here. They sell for $50 with proceeds going to veterans charities.