On Friday, the man believed to be America’s oldest military veteran will turn 110.
Army man Frank Levingston, who served in Italy during World War II, lives in Lake Charles, Louisiana, where on a recent day he shared a letter he had gotten from the White House thanking him for his service, and congratulating him on his upcoming birthday.
“We trust you take enormous pride in everything you have accomplished,” the letter says, according to NBC station KPLC.
“I think I’m one of the blessed ones,” Levingston told the station.
Born in 1905, Levingston grew up in northern Louisiana, one of seven children. He said he did not get much of a formal education, but one lesson has carried him through.
“Be honest,” he said. “That goes a long way.”
Levingston enlisted in the Army in 1942, according to military records. The Associated Press reported that he served as a private during the war in the Naples-Foggia Campaign in Italy, which lasted from September 1943 to January 1944. He was discharged in 1945.