World War II veteran who turned 100 is spending his birthday honoring fallen soldiers
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) -While many people spent Memorial Day at the beach or taking advantage of a day off, residents gathered at the historic Evergreen Cemetery to pay their respects to those who fought for this county.
“Emotionally, I didn’t lose a whole lot of friends while I was in the service but I feel the pain of them,” said Navy Veteran Theodore Rogers.
For Howard Purdy, this is a special day. He turned 100 years old today and instead of blowing out candles, he’s honoring the soldiers who defended our nation.
He served in the Navy as a machine operator from 1942 to 1945 before being honorably discharged.
Photos and memories from before and after his career were shared by the Purdy family.
“Well, he told me mostly about his time on an admiral’s yacht,” said Howard’s son Steven Purdy. “He was so well loved and respected that the admiral wanted him and he wanted him on the ship because he could fix things.”
His daughter, Cheri Purdy is his caretaker. She said he’s excited about this milestone.
“He doesn’t talk too much but I told him do you feel like you’re a century old and he goes ‘huh’ haha,” said Purdy. “I try to bring him every year and it’s usually a really good service.
Purdy’s family is coming to Gainesville for his birthday party at the Altrusa House tomorrow at 1 p.m.
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