Oldest WWII veteran in US celebrates 112th birthday

The oldest World Conflict II veteran in the US turned 112 on Sunday.

Lawrence Brooks celebrated the event in New Orleans, the place he resides, with a socially distanced drive-by get together due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Born in 1909, the Louisiana native was 31 when drafted in 1940 to hitch the conflict effort. He served as a personal within the Military’s 91st Engineer Battalion, a largely black unit stationed in New Guinea and the Philippines. The unit constructed roads, airstrips, and bridges.


His birthday celebration was organized by the Nationwide World Conflict II Museum and featured a jeep parade, a proclamation by the town, and musical performances by native artists, such because the museum’s musical trio, the Victory Belles.

Organizations and political leaders shared birthday messages on social media, together with Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, who tweeted , “Mr. Brooks, all the state of Louisiana thanks you to your service and all of us want you a joyous birthday.”

The Gary Sinise Basis, a veterans service group, additionally tweeted a birthday message.

“As one other yr passes, we’re thrilled to honor America’s oldest dwelling WWII veteran, Lawrence Brooks, who turned 112 right now,” the tweet stated. “In keeping with Lawrence, the key to his longevity might be accredited to a lifetime of ‘loving folks.’ Be a part of us in wishing him a cheerful birthday!”

Oldest WWII Vet Birthday
World Conflict II veteran Lawrence Brooks holds a photograph of him taken in 1943.

(AP Picture/Gerald Herbert, File)

The Nationwide World Conflict II Museum, which has hosted a number of events for Brooks previously, additionally featured the veteran in its oral historical past venture , obtainable to look at on YouTube. Brooks talks a few time in World Conflict II when he was delivering barbed wire to Australia, and one of many engines on the C-47 aircraft went out. To remain within the air, the pilot informed everybody to throw the barbed wire into the ocean.

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There have been solely two parachutes on the plane, and Brooks stated he informed the pilot and co-pilot he would soar on one of many males if the aircraft went down.

“We made it, although,” Brooks stated. “We had an enormous chortle about that. However I used to be all, ‘If he was gonna soar, I used to be gonna seize him.'”

Brooks is the second-oldest recognized WWII veteran on the earth. The oldest is a girl from the UK named Mollie Walker, who can also be 112 years outdated.

The oldest particular person alive is a girl from Japan, Kane Tanaka , who’s 118 years outdated and was born in 1903.

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