BOSTON (CBS/AP) — On the steps of the State House, dozens of National Guard members lined up to march through the front doors, participating in a traditional ceremony that is reserved for military units returning from battle.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Doug Cope reports:

Major General Scott Rice and Governor Deval Patrick presented two dozen units with a flag, recognizing their service over seas in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as at home.

The mayor and governor spoke about the importance of being proud of the unit’s accomplishments and personal sacrifices.

“We fight wars, we come home and take care of the American people,” Lt. Gen. Joseph Lengyel said after the ceremony. “Most recently they were on duty after the bombing in Boston. There were 400 National Guard service people who were on duty immediately.”

After the ceremony, a cannon salute took place on the Boston Common.

The State House is the birth place of the National Guard where the militia was formed; the first colonial militia was formed by the Massachusetts Bay General Court in 1636.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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