Of the 16 million US Veterans who served in World War II, only about 300,000 are still alive today. Lawrence Brooks is the oldest known Vet of them all, and this coming Saturday, September 12th, he will turn 111 years old!
Mr. Brooks was born in 1909 in Norwood, Louisiana, just outside of Baton Rouge, and is one of 15 kids. During his time spent in the military, he was part of the 91st Engineers Battalion in the Pacific Theater. He went on to have five children, 13 grandchildren, and 22 great grand children. He retired in New Orleans, and sadly, he lost his wife Leona in 2005 shortly after they were evacuated from their home by helicopter after Hurricane Katrina. Today, Mr. Brooks lives with his daughter Vanessa in New Orleans' Central City neighborhood, where he enjoys cheering on the New Orleans Saints and watching second line parades go by while he relaxes on the front porch.
The National WWII Museum in New Orleans will celebrate Mr. Brooks Saturday from 10am-11am with a special online celebration, which you can watch here. The museum also encourages the sending of birthday cards to:
The National World War II Museum
c/o Happy 111th Mr. Brooks!
945 Magazine St.
New Orleans, LA 70130
Happy Birthday, Mr. Brooks. Here's to many more!