WWII Marine Corps veteran celebrated on his 100th birthday

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Wednesday, February 7, 2024
WWII veteran celebrated as he turns 100 years old
WWII Marine Corps veteran Harold Kramer shared stories from his military history with loved ones at the Planes of Fame museum on his 100th birthday.

CHINO, Calif. (KABC) -- He's a veteran who gets to go back in time to see the warplanes that made him a World War II hero. Now, to commemorate a milestone birthday, Harold Kramer shared his stories of his military history with family members at a museum dedicated to the Planes of Fame.

It's a historic homecoming of sorts for the World War II veteran.

As Kramer turns 100 years old, his family gathered together at the Chino museum to honor him.

"It's delightful. I mean, what more in life could you ask for?" said Kramer.

Kramer was a Marine Corps instrumental mechanic for the Corsair airplane in Okinawa. The historic plane is on display at the museum. Other vehicles are part of memories he shares with family.

"Bombs were going off all over the place. So he jumped underneath this jeep for protection. The only thing he had around him being on guard duty," said Gary Alphonse Kramer, Harold's son.

Kramer didn't like talking about the war much - until he reached his 90s.

"What he remembers most is seeing the Kamikazes because they were up high, coming down trying to land on our ships," said Alphonse Kramer.

Born Jan. 31, 1924, Kramer grew up in Flint, Michigan. He enlisted in 1942. The day he left for service, he remembers the first time seeing his father cry.

"I went out on the front porch. I went to my dad to say goodbye. And he cried. And he cried. And he cried. And I never knew how much they loved us," said Kramer.

Kramer is loved very much to this day - getting hugs and kisses from his great grandchildren, a gift from the Quilts of Valor Foundation, and cheers from his entire family.

Happy 100th birthday, Harold! And thank you for your service.

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