FENTON, LA (KPLC) - A Fenton war veteran received a Congressional Gold Medal after more than 60 years.
Woodrow Duhon joined a segregated marine corps at the end of World War Two, trained at a poorly kept boot camp, then returned to the corps to serve in Korea, where he was wounded twice.
And now he is finally awarded with the recognition he deserves.
"I find out about this two or three months ago after I think they said 65 or 66 years," Duhon said.
Wearing the gold medal proudly around his neck, Duhon said it feels great. But it wasn't always great.
The infamous boot camp at Montford Point in North Carolina housed close to 20,000 African Americans preparing for the war, in conditions that were comparable to a swamp.
Decades later, Duhon joined with more than 400 veterans just like him to receive the gold medal in Washington D.C. this week.
And though receiving the Congressional Gold Medal was surprise enough, the real surprise waited for him as he returned home to Fenton.
"We went out in the airport, there was the limousine at the airport in Lafayette and five or six policemen, two on motorcycles taking us down at the end," Duhon said.
A limousine escorted by law enforcement officers back to his home in Fenton, where a town parade took place and the Mayor gave him a "key" to the town.
"Oh yea, they surprised me and everything. I wasn't looking for nothing," Duhon said.
A humble response from a man who sacrificed much more for our freedom.
To see more from the Congressional Gold Medal recipient check out the added web extra video. You can see more from the interview with Woodrow Duhon, the WWII and Korean War Veteran.
When the story was originally published, the award Mr. Duhon received was incorrectly stated. KPLC-TV regrets the error.