WASHINGTON - U.S. Rep Ed Case was among a select group of U.S. officials in France honoring fallen American troops over the weekend.

Case represented Congress during a ceremony for the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the French town of Bruyeres. That’s where the famous 442nd Regiment Combat Team and 100th Infantry Battalion fought German forces and liberated the town.

Many soldiers were Japanese Americans – including some from Hawaii – who were trying to prove loyalty to their new nation abroad at a time when they were still fighting for equality back home.

Among the honors: Case laid a wreath at the Epinal American Cemetery, where more than 5,000 Americans are buried. The RCT and Battalion each suffered heavy casualties during the battle.

The ceremony is personal for Case as well. His wife, Audrey, had two uncles serve with the 100thand 442nd.

“The 100th/442nd is such a deep part of Hawaii history,” Case told KITV on Monday. “In Bruyeres itself and in surrounding towns, they keep the memory of 442nd/100thalive. They have town squares that are named after Japanese-Americans.”

Case was the only member of Congress on the trip.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell was among the other local officials in attendance.