75th anniversary of World War II Guadalcanal Battle

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BISMARCK, N.D. - It's the 75th anniversary of the Guadalcanal Battle, which ended World War II.

The North Dakota National Guard Unit that's known as the 164th Infantry Regiment is the first U.S. army unit to offensively engage the enemy in either theatre in World War II.

The regiment is said to be the most famous North Dakota National Guard Unit.

The soldiers that were part of the 164th Regiment had over 600 days in combat.

"If the Japanese would have taken and kept Guadalcanal, that would of effectively cut off Australia and New Zealand from any support. They would of had Midway island, they would of had Guadalcanal, that meant they could of had a launching pad to attack Hawaii and from Hawaii it was the West Coast of the United States," said Shirley Olgeirson.

"Guadalcanal, we did an awful lot of walking and driving Japanese off the island," said veteran Dennis Ferk.

This Saturday there'll be an open house at the Bismarck State College National Energy Center of Excellence to celebrate the 75th anniversary.