Born on September 12, 1909, New Orleans-based Lawrence Brooks is the oldest known U.S. World War II veteran. Brooks just turned 112 last week, and
Party guests drove Brooks’ home with celebratory signs in a Jeep parade and, in true New Orleans fashion, the parade was accompanied by a group of local musicians who call themselves the “Lawrence Brooks Birthday Band.” The festivities also included a live performance from the Museum’s vocal trio, The Victory Belles. And of course, there was plenty of birthday cake.
Brooks served in the U.S. Army from 1940–1945 as part of the predominantly African American 91st Engineer Battalion, which was stationed in New Guinea and the Philippines. Brooks has five children, 13 grandchildren, and 22 great-grandchildren. Sadly, Brooks lost his wife, Leona, in 2005 to Hurricane Katrina, when she was 81 years old.
“Mr. Brooks’ birthday is a significant reminder of those who have served and continue to dedicate their lives to our freedom,” says the museum. “The National WWII Museum’s ongoing educational mission is to tell the story of the American experience in the war that changed the world so that all generations will understand the price of freedom and be inspired by what they learn.”
World War II veteran Lawrence Brooks recently celebrated his 112th birthday with a jeep parade organized by The National WWII Museum.
Born on September 12, 1909, he is oldest known U.S. World War II veteran.
From his front porch, he was serenaded by the Museum’s vocal trio, The Victory Belles.