Tags: Veterans | veteran | wwii | world war ii | lawrence brooks

Oldest Living US World War II Veteran Thanks God for Longevity

World War II veteran Lawrence Brooks at his 110th birthday party in New Orleans
World War II veteran Lawrence Brooks at his 110th birthday party in New Orleans. (Gerald Herbert/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 19 September 2019 10:52 AM

There are two things that 110-year-old military veteran Lawrence Brooks credits for his longevity — faith and kindness. The New Orleans resident, who celebrated his birthday last week, has attended so many parties in his honor and although there may not be that many birthdays left, he is not worried "because God has let me live this long already," The Christian Broadcasting Network reported.

A special birthday celebration was held for Brooks at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans last Thursday. Surrounded by friends, family, and military service members, the supercentenarian shared stories about his time in the war and offered a few tips on how to live a long and fulfilling life, Nola.com reported.

"I don't know why I've lived this long," he admitted. "But I think it has a lot to do with always being nice to people."

Brooks served in the Army's 91st Engineer Battalion, a predominately African-American unit, where he eventually reached the rank of private first class. During that time, Brooks encountered his share of harrowing experiences, including witnessing an incendiary bomb go off in a nearby tent while stationed at New Guinea. In another incident, Brooks was traveling in a cargo plane when one of its engines seized up, CNN noted.

The plane, which only contained two parachutes, was loaded with barbed wire and Brooks recounted having to throw boxes out to lighten the load. While doing so, he turned to the pilot and joked about grabbing hold of him if he jumped.

"It was a scary moment," he said. "But we made it."

Brooks has become a local celebrity in his own right and has made many friends over the years.

"We consider him our 'veteran,'" said National WWII Museum vice president Peter Crean, per Nola.com. "We've told him, 'As long as you keep having birthdays, we are going to keep having birthday parties for you here.'"

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There are two things that 110-year-old military veteran Lawrence Brooks credits for his longevity - faith and kindness.
veteran, wwii, world war ii, lawrence brooks
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2019-52-19
Thursday, 19 September 2019 10:52 AM
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