Nation’s oldest World War II Veteran dies at age 112

Austin native and World War II Veteran Richard Overton died Thursday December 27 at the age of 112. Not only was Overton the oldest Veteran, but he was also the nation’s oldest living man.

Born May 11, 1906 in Texas Overton volunteered for the Army in 1942 serving in the 188th Aviation Engineer Battalion a segregated unit that saw action on the Pacific Front in places like Pearl Harbor, Okinawa., and Iwo Jima.

According to History-army the Battalion also fought served at GuadalcanalmNorthern Solomons, Leyte, and the Southern Philippines.

Later Overton worked at a furniture store and for the Texas Department of Treasury.

After retirement Overton spend his days on the stage of his house, his front porch. There he smoke twelve cigars daily and enjoyed whiskey and Coke while watching people come and go on Richard Overton Avenue.

The street was named for him by the City of Austin when he turned 111.

At first an ordinary man living an ordinary life, as he grew older he gained fame and people began to stop to have a photo taken with him and to thank him for his service to his country.

His secret to his long life?

Overton said, “Just keep living. Don’t die.”

Richard Arvin Overton 1906 – 2018

The Times Tribune

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