ORLANDO, Fla. -

France recognized 19 American World War II veterans Wednesday in Orlando for fighting alongside their country during the war.

Many of these men, who are approaching 90-years-old, received the French Legion of Honor, which is the highest distinction the country can give to any person, military or civilian.

A French Admiral, currently serving alongside the American forces in Tampa, presented the awards. He was joined by the Consul General of France in Miami. He thanked the veterans for fighting with France in WW2 and continuing the friendly relationship between the U.S. and France.

87-year-old Edward Woodson was 17 when he joined the service in 1943 and fought in the historic Battle of the Bulge.

"To be here I actually feel I'm honoring the ones who gave their life. I'm honoring them," he said.