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A group of 80 American airmen known as the Doolittle Raiders, including a Nashville man, are in line to receive the Congressional Gold Medal for their bravery in the first U.S. air raid on Japan in World War II.

The Doolittle Raiders, led by Air Force Lt. Col. James Doolittle, took off from the aircraft carrier USS Hornet in 16 B-25 bombers April 18, 1942, to attack military targets in Tokyo and other cities. One of the few living veterans of the raid is Lt. Col. Robert Hite, who lives in Nashville.

"America needed to turn the tide of war after the attack on Pearl Harbor," U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper said in a news release. "Lt. Col. Hite and his fellow Doolittle Raiders delivered."

Legislation to honor the raiders with the Congressional Gold Medal has passed the House and the Senate and is expected to become law after differences between the two versions are ironed out, Cooper's office said.

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