Glendale Navy veteran who served during WWII celebrates 100th birthday

Guillermo Rey's family plans to celebrate the Navy veteran with a huge party.

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Saturday, August 6, 2022
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Guillermo Rey's family plans to celebrate the Navy veteran with a huge party for his 100th birthday.

GLENDALE, Calif. (KABC) -- Guillermo Rey was all smiles as he turns 100 years old.

"I'm happy, very happy about it," Rey said.

Today, Rey resides in Glendale but he grew up in Texas.

At 19 years old, he joined the Navy and served during WWII. While in the Navy, he traveled to San Francisco, Cuba, Scotland and Japan. But once he was discharged, he jumped on a freight train to California with only $10 to his name.

"At that time, everybody was going to California on the train. It was an experience," Rey said.

Rey worked various jobs before landing in the restaurant business.

"I've been in the restaurant business for 50 some odd years," Rey said.

And his family still runs the Mexican restaurant he opened in 1973 called Casa del Rey. There are locations in San Dimas and Sierra Madre.

"His life, I think, can be a reminder that we can hopefully heal and move on and see decades of a good life. I'm very grateful to him and all vets for their service," said Dolores Ramos, Rey's daughter.

The family plans to celebrate Rey's life with a big party of 160 people with all the things he loves: family, friends and a mariachi band.

"You've got to have a huge celebration. It's a huge milestone," Ramos said.