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Retired U.S. Marine receives Congressional Gold Medal award

MILWAUKEE (WKOW) — Retired Staff Sgt. William Coffer, Jr. got a Congressional gold medal on Sunday.

Coffer was one of the first African Americans to enlist in the Marine Corps in the 1940s, training at Montford Point in North Carolina.

Coffer got choked up at the ceremony in Milwaukee, but says he’s thankful for his time in the service.

“That was an opportunity to be meaningful. Having something meaningful. And I still believe it. Two years of military service would be good for a lot of people,” he said.

In 2012, former President Obama presented the Congressional gold medal to about 365 of the 20,000 African American Montford Point Marines.

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