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Sunday, June 16, 2019

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110-year-old World War II vet gets Washington trip

110-year-old World War II vet gets Washington trip

LAKE CHARLES, La. (AP) — A 110-year-old World War II veteran is heading to Washington.
A white limousine brought Frank Levingston to VFW Post 2013 on Saturday for a departure ceremony at which the mayor of Lake Charles and the Calcasieu Parish sheriff and district attorney spoke.

District Attorney John DeRosier said that when he looked at Levingston, he didn't see a 110-year-old man.
"I see a young black soldier in green utilities with worn combat boots, scampering across the sand on those beaches," he said.

The American Press reported that a crowd of community members and veterans attended.
Then the limo took him to the airport for a flight to Washington.

Highlights include a Pearl Harbor ceremony at the World War II Memorial and, on Tuesday, a White House tour, KPLC-TV reported
With him are his great-niece Shannon Levingston, and his nephew Joseph Levingston.

Since news about his age and service broke, Shannon Levingston said, her great-uncle has gone "from a local celebrity to a national one."
Levingston was a private during the Allied invasion of Italy in September 1943. He was honorably discharged in 1945.
His birthday was Nov. 13.

Born in Cotton Valley, Levingston was one of seven children. He enlisted in the Army in 1942.
After his honorable discharge, he became a union worker specializing in cement finishing.
His sense of humor was evident Saturday. As he waited in a back room of the VFW for the ceremony to start, someone told him the crowd was looking forward to seeing how good looking he was.

"Well, they won't be seeing much," he said, laughing.

An event organizer later told him that the ceremony wouldn't be long because organizers wanted to save his energy for the journey.
Frank nodded in agreement, paused for a second, and joked, "Make sure it's not too short."

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