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Photo caption: U.S. Rep. Terri A. Sewell, D-Ala., right kisses Beatrice Price after Price was presented the Congressional Gold Medal for her service as support personnel to the Tuskegee Airmen, Sunday, Sept. 16, 2012, at 6th Ave. Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala. (AP Photo/The Birmingham News,Bernard Troncale)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Two World War II veterans who served with the Tuskegee Airmen have received Congressional Gold Medals.

The Birmingham News reports that U.S. Rep. Terry Sewell presented the medals to Elijah James Oliver Jr. and Beatrice Muse Price during ceremonies Sunday in Birmingham. Oliver was a flight officer and Price was a nurse for the nation’s first group of black fighter pilots.

Sewell said the battle that Oliver and Price fought against racial discrimination led to the opportunities that many enjoy today.

Congress awarded the Congressional Gold Medal to the Tuskegee Airmen as a group in 2007, but members of Congress can present bronze replicas to individuals in their districts who served in the group. Oliver, who’s 87, called the award one of the greatest things that ever happened to him.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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