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Help the nation’s oldest WWII veteran celebrate his 111th birthday

Since the threat of COVID-19, there won't be a celebration at the museum for Brooks' birthday. Instead, the museum is asking people to send birthday cards that'll be delivered to Mr. Brooks.

by Mary Staes
August 14, 2020

During World War II, New Orleans resident Lawrence Brooks served in the Pacific Theater. The predominantly African-American 91st Engineer Battalion helped make runways for planes.

Now, more than 75 years later, Brooks can still recount cooking red bans halfway around the world, as he did in an interview for National Geographic earlier this year.  His Central City home is not far from The National World War II Museum, where he’s been celebrating his birthday since 2014. At 110, he’s the nation’s oldest known WWII Veteran.

But like much this year, things are different. Since the threat of COVID-19, there won’t be a celebration at the museum for Brooks’ birthday. Instead, the museum is asking people to send birthday cards that’ll be delivered to Mr. Brooks.

The museum is asking all cards be sent by Sept. 1 to:

The National WWII Museum
c/o Happy 111th Mr. Brooks!
945 Magazine Street
New Orleans, LA 70130

Happy birthday Mr. Brooks and thank you for your service! ❤️️ Here are pictures photographer Matthew Hinton took at Mr. Brooks birthday celebration in 2019.

Mary Staes is our Digital Curator. She crafts content for our social media platforms and our website. Before Very Local, she worked with CBS affiliate WWL-TV as a web producer and weekend assignment editor for about 4 years. She has also handled broadcast coverage for 160 Marine Reserve training facilities while she served as an active duty Marine. As a native New Orleanian, she takes being "very local" to heart. She loves being intertwined with the culture and figuring out how there are less than two degrees of separation between us all, whether we're natives or not.

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