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The oldest U.S. WWII veteran has died — at 112

by Legacy Staff

Richard Overton, at 112 years old, was the oldest remaining U.S. World War II veteran, the oldest man in the United States, and the third-oldest man in the world. He volunteered for the U.S. Army, serving all over the Pacific Theater in its all-black 188th Aviation Engineer Battalion. A native of Texas, Overton returned to his home state after the war and worked for the Texas Department of the Treasury.

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Died: Thursday, December 27, 2018 (Who else died on December 27?)


Details of death: Died in Austin, Texas of pneumonia at the age of 112.

He loved his long life: Overton won hearts with his colorful statements about his longevity. He enjoyed his old age, he told CNN in 2013, by smoking cigars daily and spiking his coffee with whiskey. He told the press he didn’t take any medicine, and at his 112th birthday party in May, he proudly noted that he felt fine, with no aches and pains. He was a fixture of East Austin, often seen sitting on the front porch of the home he built in 1945.

Memorable quote: “I eat ice cream every night. It makes me happy.” —Overton, in the 2015 documentary short “Mr. Overton”

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What people said about him: “With his quick wit and kind spirit he touched the hearts of so many, and… made us proud to be Texans and proud to be Americans. We can never repay Richard Overton for his service to our nation and for his lasting impact on the Lone Star State.” —Texas Gov. Greg Abbott

Full obituaryAustin American-Statesman

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