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Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Missouri Flags Flown at Half-Staff for WWI Vet UPDATE: Family of WWI veteran looks forward to 110th birthday, nation's lone living veteran of World War I
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - U.S. and Missouri flags at state buildings will be at half-staff on Tuesday in honor of the last surviving American veteran of World War I.
Frank W. Buckles will be buried Tuesday at Arlington National Cemetery. He died last month at age 110.
Buckles was born in Bethany, Mo., and also lived in Vernon County.
Gov. Jay Nixon earlier also ordered that flags at state buildings in Harrison and Vernon counties, and at the National World War I Museum in Kansas City, be flown at half-staff from March 2 to March 8 in honor of Buckles.
Washington (CNN) -- The family of Frank Buckles, the nation's lone living veteran of World War I, hopes he makes it to his 110th birthday about a month from now, despite troubling signs he is on the decline.
Buckles, who was born February 1, 1901, is thought to be the world's oldest living war veteran. Buckles has slowed down considerably in just the past two months, according to his daughter Susannah Buckles Flanagan, who lives with him at the family home near Charles Town, in the eastern panhandle of West Virginia. A family friend who visited two weeks ago says he is awake just a few hours a day.
"When he's awake, he's there with us," said David DeJonge, a Michigan portrait photographer who has spent the past decade documenting the final few veterans from the war that ended 92 years ago. With only one veteran left, DeJonge spends the remaining time helping Buckles represent the memory of his comrades.
Despite his advanced age, Buckles had been coming to Capitol Hill to try to persuade lawmakers to grant federal status to an existing World War I monument in Washington that was built in the 1930s. The monument currently honors only those who served from the District of Columbia.
"I have to," Buckles told CNN when he came to Washington a year ago to testify as part of what he considers his responsibility to those who've gone before him.
Although passed by the House, the legislation, known as the Frank Buckles Memorial Act, remains stalled in the Senate. Passage would bestow federal status to both the D.C. location and another WWI memorial in Kansas City, Missouri. His family is concerned he may never live to see the bill enacted.
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3/3/10 - Claude Choules of Australia turns 109.
2/18/10 - John Babcock of USA dies of pneumonia, aged 109.
2/19/10 - Florence Green of UK turns 109.
2/1/10 - Frank Buckles of USA turns 109.
7/25/09 - Harry Patch of UK dies of natural causes, aged 111.
7/18/09 - Henry Allingham of UK dies in his sleep, aged 113.
6/3/09 - John Ross of Australia dies in his sleep, aged 110.
Frank Buckles (USA) - 109
Florence Green (UK) - 109
Claude Choules (Australia) - 109
http://HermannHearsay.blogspot.com/(Hermann Area News, Commentary & Discussion)
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