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Local Filipino WWII vets honored with congressional gold medals

World War II veterans from the Philippines and their families were honored Sunday by receiving congressional gold medals at a ceremony in Renton. (KOMO News)

RENTON, Wash. -- World War II veterans from the Philippines and their families were honored Sunday by receiving congressional gold medals at a ceremony in Renton.

Two of the eight living veterans attended along with the family members of about 140 others.

The medal is the highest civilian award.

"Because of the proximity of Fort Lawton and Fort Lewis, most of the Filipino soldiers who joined the U.S. Army retired from this area. It's a beautiful state, I retired here," U.S. Army retired Brigadier gen. Oscar Hilman said.

The Filipino WW II veterans had been denied medals until last year when their contributions were finally recognized. More than 250,000 Filipinos fought for the U.S. during WWII.

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