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Thieves drain entire bank account of America’s oldest WWII vet Richard Overton

Richard Overton, right, one of the oldest-living World War II veterans, passed the game ball to the referees before the 2016 All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Jan. 9, 2016. Overton served with the 1887th Aviation Engineer Battalion. (Army Photo by Sgt. Bethany L. Huff)
July 02, 2018

America’s oldest World War II veteran Richard Overton, who is 112 years old, has been the victim of identity theft and his bank account has been emptied.

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

When Volma Overton, a cousin, went to make a deposit into Richard’s checking account last week, the bank account had been drained, CBS News reported.

Volma Overton said thieves obtained his social security number and bank account number, and used all the funds to purchase bonds.

“[I’m] upset and just wondering who could do something to Richard like this. What happened to the rest of the money,” Volma Overton told CBS affiliate KEYE.

The bank said an account from the government’s Treasury Direct program made four separate withdrawals from the account.

Someone had set up an account with the service using Richard Overton’s name to purchase the bonds.

In 2015, an online campaign raised in excess of $420,000 for the WWII veteran. The stolen money was not part of that fund.

“He’s going to be upset. We are trying to keep him in his home through all types of fundraisers, and someone could just take from him? You’re going to do that to him? Shame on you,” family friend Martin Wilford said.

In 2016, Overton’s family created a GoFundMe so Overton can receive home health care.

The Austin Police Department is investigating the identity theft case.



Overton was a marksman in a segregated unit. He was stationed in Pearl Harbor and Okinawa, and he served in the South Pacific from 1940 through 1945.

Over the past few years, Overton has gained a lot of media attention for being the oldest living World War II veteran.

“It’s all right,” Overton told My Statesman about his fame. “It’s something different. I like it.”

Overton said that he plans on living several more years.

“I love to have a birthday,” Overton told My Statesman this year. “That’s another day. I hope I live another five years.”

“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.

Overton isn’t slowing down. Earlier this year, Austin businessman Robert Smith took Overton on his private jet to visit the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington. He received a private tour and met with former Secretary of State Colin Powell.

He told TODAY in 2016 that the secret to his long-lasting life is to chain smoke cigars, have a little whiskey with morning coffee, and to eat fried catfish and peanut butter ice cream regularly.

When it comes which whiskey he likes, Overton told My Statesman: “I like any kind you’ll bring me.”