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100-Year-Old World War II Vet Shares His Story On Veterans Day

MARLBORO (CBS) – More than 80 residents at the New Horizons assisted living facility in Marlboro are veterans and consider Veterans Day special, but one is older than the holiday itself.

One-hundred-year-old Arthur Butler told WBZ-TV about his time in the service during World War II and all about being stationed in Texas and then California.

"I was very fortunate I stayed there a year. I had a good day job. Just like being home. Get up in the morning. Come back. That's the coolest summer I ever spent," Butler said.

One-hundred-year-old Arthur Butler served in World War II. (WBZ-TV)

From there, Butler got on a boat to spend three more months in Hawaii before being sent overseas.

"I arrived in Okinawa in May," he said.

He was in his early 20s and setting foot in another country for the very first time. Butler, who rose to the rank of corporal, was on the front lines. He remembers one incident in particular.

"He had his arm up, like this, and I knew he was going to throw a grenade… And he did. I was just lucky," Butler said.

He was hurt, but OK. Butler later received a Purple Heart and Bronze Star.

"I'm glad I had the experience. I got back, and it's like a lot of others – it's the biggest trip they ever took. I had never been on the ocean except for the service," he said.

And though Butler is humble, he knows his service is something to be proud of, especially on Veterans Day.

"Proud? Oh certainly, yes. You get to see the country do well," he said.

Butler also shared his secret to living a long and full life.

"I worked all the time. I was never unemployed. I didn't sit around and watch TV all day. I had good genes I guess, I know I did," he said.

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