Louisiana’s Oldest Living WWII Veteran Dies at 112
America's oldest living World War II veteran has died. 112-year-old Lawrence Brooks, a Louisiana native, passed away earlier today.
According to The New Orleans National WWII Museum, Brooks was born on September 12, 1909, and was born and raised in Northwood, Louisiana (about 40 miles north of Baton Rouge).
"The National WWII Museum is saddened to hear of the passing of Lawrence Brooks, who died today. At age 112, he was the oldest known living U.S. veteran."
Mr. Brooks was drafted into the U.S. Army at the age of 31 and spent World War II in the predominantly African American 91st Engineer Battalion.
After returning home after the war, Brooks worked as a forklift operator, retiring in his seventies.
His wife, Leona, died in November 2008, and he is survived by five children, 13 grandchildren, and 32 great-grandchildren.
In 2020, the Museum launched a birthday card drive for him and it generated an outpouring of love, with Brooks receiving over 21,500 cards from all 50 states and nearly 30 countries.
“The Board of Trustees, staff and volunteers at The National WWII Museum will forever cherish the memories we shared with Lawrence Brooks,” said Stephen J. Watson, Museum President & CEO. “He was a beloved friend, a man of great faith and had a gentle spirit that inspired those around him. As the nation’s oldest known living veteran, he proudly served our country during World War II, and returned home to serve his community and church. His kindness, smile and sense of humor connected him to generations of people who loved and admired him. We send our sincerest condolences to his daughter Vanessa and the entire Brooks family.”