Coast to Coast

Veteran Celebrates 100 Years

Frank Charles trained to be a pilot and then a navigator, but didn’t do either of those jobs. Instead, he served as a gunner in a ball turret on a B54 and lost consciousness when his oxygen was cut off, according to his daughter, Jannene Colky. He was just 22 when someone rescued him. (Courtesy of Frank Charles’ Family)

In a recent article for Laker/Lutz News, our sister publication from Florida, staff journalist B.C. Manion writes about a local veteran celebrating their milestone 100th birthday. Frank Charles, Land O’ Lakes resident and veteran of the U.S. Air Force, was celebrated with live music, visits from family members, appearances from dignitaries and a gathering. 

“The nursing home and the FDVA (Florida Department of Veterans Affairs) did an outstanding job of making my father feel special on his 100th birthday,” his daughter, Debbie, said in a telephone interview, following the event. “They did a marvelous job of decorating with balloons,” she added, and those attending were able to enjoy their choice of a piece of chocolate or white cake from a sheet cake she brought to the party. They played Elvis, and they sang Happy Birthday and God Bless America. It was wonderful.” 

Read more on Laker/Lutz News here.
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