A salute to 2019

U.S. Marines pose for a photo in front of an EA-6B Prowler at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina, Feb. 26, 2019. Marine Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron (VMAQ) 2 flew the aircraft in preparation for their final flight as the last remaining Prowler squadron in the Marine Corps. The Marines and aircraft are assigned to VMAQ-2, Marine Aircraft Group 14, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Jered T. Stone)

RALEIGH — Military-related news in North Carolina during 2019 saw the marking of a major milestone in June with the 75th anniversary of the Normandy invasion.

A formal ceremony at the state capitol and the reading of the names of the 39 North Carolinians who sacrificed their lives on D-Day were followed by a wreath-laying ceremony and a rifle salute on the lawn of the historic capitol grounds.

Camp LeJeune and Cherry Point Marine bases were the recipients of much-needed disaster relief aid after President Trump signed a $19.1 billion disaster aid bill. The bill was passed by the U.S. Senate in May and contains $381 million to repair damage caused by Hurricane Florence to various military installations in Onslow County.

At the end of May, a change of command ceremony at the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam was held for the U.S. attack submarine, the USS North Carolina (SSN 777). Commander Michael Fisher was relieved by Commander Matthew Lewis.

Cherry Point Marine Base was the scene for the retirement of the last squadron of EA-6B Prowlers known as the Death Jesters. The EA-6B Prowler squadron had been deployed last year in support of military operations in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. They flew their final combat mission on Feb. 28.

Lt. Gov. Dan Forest launched his bid for governor, and his plan to make North Carolina the most military-friendly state in the country, with programs focused on supporting military families, transitioning to civilian life and building a career in North Carolina.

N.C. Army National Guard Brig. Gen. Todd Hunt took over command as the 41st adjutant general of the North Carolina National Guard, replacing retiring Major Gen. Gregory Lusk.

About A.P. Dillon 679 Articles
A.P. Dillon is a North State Journal reporter located near Raleigh, North Carolina. Find her on Twitter: @APDillon_