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A final salute to our last doughboy

February 13, 2011

America's last surviving World War I veteran, West Virginian Frank Woodruff Buckles, recently celebrated his 110th birthday. Though we have never met, I grew up with lots of his Doughboy contemporaries. My grandfather, a World War I cavalryman, was one of them. He was born in 1897 and his hand-colored 1917 Army picture hangs on my wall. They were the generation that connected the frontier days to our emerging modernity, saw the first automobiles and airplanes, and lived through the sinking of the Titanic.



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