Newark native posthumously awarded Congressional Gold Medal

A Newark World War II veteran has been posthumously awarded a Congressional Gold Medal.

News 12 Staff

Aug 2, 2021, 2:35 AM

Updated 996 days ago

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A Newark World War II veteran has been posthumously awarded a Congressional Gold Medal.
Matthew Harris Sr. was awarded the medal from the Montford Point Marine Association.
His 99-year-old widow, Kathryn, accepted the medal on his behalf.
The Montford Point Marines were the first African Americans allowed to enlist in the United States Marine Corps., and though they could serve, they were segregated and trained separately from white Marines.
Approximately 20,000 Black marines were trained at Montford Point between 1942 to 1949.
In 1949, all branches of the armed forces were desegregated. Since the founding of the National Montford Point Marine Association in 1968, it's been the organization's goal to find and recognize Black veterans who trained at Montford Point.
In 2011, uhe Congressional Gold Medal was authorized by President Barack Obama and 450 surviving Montford Point Marines were presented with the award for their valor.
For more information about The National Montford Point Marine Association New Jersey chapter, please email info@njmpma45.org.


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