ABC7 Salutes: 95-year-old Marine veteran still involved with his San Dimas community

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Saturday, August 29, 2020
ABC7 Salutes: 95-year-old Marine veteran still involved with community
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World War II Marine veteran Carl Harstine, 95, is a long-time fixture in San Dimas and his actions show you're never too old to give back to the community.

SAN DIMAS, Calif. (KABC) -- If you live in the eastern San Gabriel Valley, there's a good chance you know Carl Harstine. And if you don't, you should!

"I've done a lot of different things," Harstine says, clearly an understatement.

He recently celebrated his 95th birthday, and this Marine veteran has lived quite the life.

"Well I've seen everything from horse and buggy days to self-driving cars!" laughed Harstine.

With written permission from his father, Harstine joined the Marines in 1942 during World War II when he was only 17 years old. As a member of the 3rd Marine Corps division, he experienced his first combat the following year, and went on to receive four medals for his service.

"I couldn't hear anything for three days, my hearing started coming back after the third day, but it's never been the same," said Harstine.

Harstine, who married his high school sweetheart and had two children, has lived in the same San Dimas home since 1978.

To this day, he remains active in various organizations and events including the San Dimas HEROES program where you can see him standing on street corners collecting funds to build a memorial monument in his hometown.

Bottom line, he just loves giving back.

"If you want to go in the military, go in," said Harstine. "Do what you're supposed to do, don't give them any trouble. If make trouble, then you're gonna get in trouble."

His family told Eyewitness News Harstine is believed to be one of the "most photographed persons" in the area. What an honor, and we thank him for his service.