Richard Overton, who is believed to be the oldest living veteran of World War II, was getting his wish to meet President Barack Obama on Veteran’s Day.

Overton, 107, attended a veteran’s group touring of both the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial and the World War II Memorial back in May. At the time, he expressed a desire to meet the president. With Overton’s unique status of being the oldest WWII veteran, the meeting wasn’t too hard to arrange. Allen Bergeron, who serves as the chairman for the Texas veterans group Honor Flight Austin, had the call made to get Overton a chance to meet Obama.

On Monday, Nov. 11, Veteran’s Day, Overton was scheduled to eat breakfast with the POTUS at the White House. From there, he’d join the president for the Veterans Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.

Overton fought in World War II with the Army’s 188th Aviation Engineer Battalion. Unlike many of his fellow soldiers, he wasn’t drafted into service, but rather volunteered for service in 1942 when he was in his 30s. With the all-black unit, Overton fought in the Pacific on various islands.

"War's nothing to be into," Overton said, according to USA Today. "You don't want to go into the war if you don't have to. But I had to go. I enjoyed it after I'd went and come back, but I didn't enjoy it when was over there. I had to do things I didn't want to do."

What Overton does like to do and what he credits for his longevity is having a tablespoon of whiskey in his coffee every morning and smoking 10 cigars per day. He has been living as a widower in the home he built after returning from the war for the last 22 years. With him on his trip to Washington, Overton brought his "lady friend" 89-year-old Earlene Love.

– Chelsea Regan

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  • ErikaLogan
    ErikaLogan on

    God bless Mr.Overton. thank you for your service.

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