Washington, D.C. – This week, bill language authored by Congressman Rouzer to designate and recognize the city of Wilmington as the first nationally recognized “American World War II City” passed the House of Representatives. H.R. 1512 establishes a process to allow the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to designate at least one city in the United States each year with this illustrious title. This city will be designated due to their mighty contributions to the war effort, and their amazing accomplishments in preserving the history of WWII.
This is a major step in encouraging the preservation of our national heritage so that structures, artifacts, museums and veterans are properly and safely persevered. If passed into law, the city of Wilmington would be the first “American World War II City.”
Due to the hard work and dedication of Captain Wilbur D. Jones, Jr., USNR (Ret.) – a Wilmington native, distinguished author and active veteran in the community – this bill came to fruition after 8 years of Jones’ continued work on this bill.
“I would like to thank Captain Wilbur Jones for his tireless efforts to award Wilmington the recognition it deserves. The city of Wilmington was a vital and strategic location during World War II and was critical in supporting and winning the war. This bill will ensure that all cities with significant WWII history are given the distinction their residents and communities deserve.”
Wilmington was regarded as the defense capital of the state during World War II with major industries supporting the war’s efforts - including shipbuilding, fertilizer plants, agriculture, manufacturing and clothing factories. Wilmington has numerous military museums, memorials and memorabilia detailing the history of the war and its impact around Southeastern North Carolina, including veterans who called Wilmington ‘home’ following the end of the war.
Congressman Rouzer’s bill was rolled into H.R. 677, the American Heroes COLA Act of 2015, which provides for annual cost-of-living adjustments to be made automatically by law each year.