Nation's oldest World War II vet dies in Texas at age 112

Nation's oldest World War II vet dies in Texas at age 112

The Austin Statesman reported he died Thursday at a night rehabilitation facility in Austin, where he had been since Christmas Eve after a bout with pneumonia.

Earlier this year, the Austin City Council changed the name of his street from Hamilton to Richard Overton Avenue, and declared that day "Richard Overton Day".

The Under Secretary of the Army shakes hands with then-110-year-old Richard Overton, who presented the game ball for the 2017 U.S. Army All-American Bowl held in the Alamodome in San Antonio last January.

Richard Overton, America's oldest World War II veteran - also believed to be the oldest living man in the US - died Thursday, The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports.

President Barack Obama invited Overton to Washington, D.C., to visit the White House and participate in a Veterans Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.

Upon his return to Austin in 1945, he worked at local furniture store before landing a job as a courier for the Texas Department of Treasury, working from the Texas State Capitol. A family member says Overton, the nation's oldest World War II veteran who was also believed to be oldest living man in the US, has died in Texas.

Richard Overton
Richard Overton REX Shutterstock

Overton was well-known to his neighbors, who often chatted with him on his porch in East Austin during the 72 years he lived there.

Overton was born on a farm in Bastrop County, just outside Austin, in 1906.

Richard Overton volunteered for the Army in 1942 and served with the 188th Aviation Engineer Battalion, an all-black unit that served on various islands in the Pacific. "On behalf of Texas, Cecilia and I offer our thoughts and prayers to his family and friends", Abbott said. "But this veteran held his head high", Obama said.

A GoFundMe campaign raised close to $200,000 to help pay for in-home care for the proud veteran. He was 112, his family said. He told CNN that he credited God for his long life, admitting he didn't take medicine and enjoyed his cigars and whiskey.

"I like any kind you'll bring me", he said. He was 112 years old.

Overton led a life well-lived, filled with love, laughter, bravery and courage.

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