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America’s Oldest Veterans Turns 110

May 13, 2016

On Wednesday, America’s oldest World War II veteran, Richard Overton turned 110.


Overton served in World War II as a corporal in the all-black 1887th Engineer Aviation Battalion for the United States Army Air Forces serving in Guam, Iwo Jima and Hawaii.

Overton was born on May 11, 1906 and just recently received the title of America’s oldest living veteran after the unfortunate passing of veteran Frank Levingston.

He told TODAY that his secrets for his long last life is to chain smoke cigars, have a little whiskey with morning coffee and to eat fried catfish and peanut butter ice cream regularly.

Overton joined the all-black unit back in 1942 and was a skilled sharpshooter.

Overton has met the likes of both Barack Obama and Rick Perry, but was not fazed by the attention he received by them. Talking about Governor Perry, Overton told KTBC in Austin, “he’s human, ain’t he?”

Overton told TODAY that he plans on living a long time. “If man had [control over longevity], I’d have been dead, but God’s got it, and he’s keeping me well,” Overton said during a ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery in November 2007.