United Press International 6:47PM ET 1/05/2022
The oldest living American veteran of World War II died Wednesday at the age of 112.
Lawrence Brooks died in Louisiana, NBC News reported.
Lawrence Brooks, with a photo of him taken in 1943, as he celebrates his 110th birthday at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, on Sept. 12, 2019. Brooks, the oldest World War II veteran in the U.S. — and believed to be the oldest man in the country — died Wednesday, at the age of 112.Gerald Herbert / AP fileThe Louisiana native and long-time resident was drafted into the military in 1940.
His daughter, Vanessa Brooks, told Military Times that his health had recently been declining and he had been in and out of the hospital several times in recent months.
She told the publication he enjoyed the holidays, watching the New Orleans Saints on TV.
Brooks celebrated his 112th birthday in September.
The Military Times detailed his birthday parties, thrown by the local World War II museum for the past seven years. That included a military flyover for what would be his final celebration in September.
He served in the Army’s 91st Engineer Battalion which served during a time when the military’s segregation practices were still in effect.
Louisiana Gov. Jon Bel Edwards issued a statement on Twitter saying he was thankful to have met Brooks and was praying for his family.
Born in Baton Rouge, Brooks was initially discharged in 1941 and returned to New Orleans.
He later rejoined the military following the attack on Pearl Harbor shortly thereafter. Brooks did not see combat and spent the majority of his military career during World War II stationed in Australia.
Brooks retired as a forklift operator in his 70s, and his wife Leona died in 2008.
Brooks is survived by five children, 13 grandchildren and 32 great-grandchildren.
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