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102-year-old D-Day veteran honored as a Tennessee Colonel for his service

Ubert McConnell bravely fought at Omaha Beach on D-Day. He was one of the first 30 on it before the wave hit.

KINGSPORT, Tenn. — An East Tennessee veteran who served during World War II received a special honor Friday.

Representatives John Crawford and Gary Hicks came to Church Hill to honor 102-year-old Ubert McConnell.

McConnell bravely fought at Omaha Beach on D-Day - he was one of the first 30 on it before the wave hit.

He was a staff sergeant over a machine gun unit and earned a Silver Star and a Purple Heart.

For his service, Gov. Bill Lee read a proclamation recognizing him as a Tennessee Colonel.

McConnell also received a Centenarian Award for being over 100 years old.

"Anything that he gets the recognition and that type of thing we're humbled to be honest because he feels like he didn't do anything except what he had to do and you know he doesn't look at it like he was a hero in any way shape or form," McConnell's daughter Lee Ann McConnell said.

McConnell also received a flag that has flown over the state capital for service.