Harvard professor among veterans to get Congressional Gold Medal

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Boston (CNN) -- Out of sheer boredom, Susumu Ito, in World War II, became a forward artillery observer, one of the most dangerous jobs available.

"I lied to my mom and told her it was assigned," he recalled. "I didn't want to tell her I thought it was exciting."

Forward artillery observers are among the first to go behind enemy lines, scouting for enemy installations and troop formations, targeting them for artillery strikes. In combat, he used an artillery periscope to spot enemy positions and direct cannon fire.

Ito had been in the Army since 1940, but after the attack on Pearl Harbor, many Japanese-American soldiers were discharged, and even those kept on were disarmed and reassigned.

"They took our rifles away, they didn't know what to do with us," Ito said....

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