By Joe Holden

NEWTOWN SQUARE, Pa. (CBS) — A very special Veterans Day parade in Delaware County honored a retired Navy lieutenant on his 105th birthday in a very fitting way. Eugene Vickers has quite the story to tell, and pouring rain and overcast skies did not stop dozens of emergency responders from wishing Vickers a happy birthday.

A line of flashing lights and a string of emergency vehicles on Wednesday afternoon left the campus of a stone veterans memorial to give a happy birthday salute to a living memorial.

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Credit: CBS3

A legend in these parts of Delaware County, Vickers turned 105 on this Veterans Day. The retired World War II-era Navy lieutenant downplayed his celebrity status.

“I’m just one of the boys,” Vickers said.

The men and women of emergency services lined up by the dozen in a light, mild rain.

“I put the message out that we were gonna honor a 105-year-old veteran, they just lined up,” Springfield Police Chief Joe Daly said.

Vickers’ daughters helped put together the birthday parade. The response was overwhelming.

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“It just blows my mind, it’s unbelievable. And he’s just so humble,” daughter Barbara Vickers said.

For a man who saw action on two warships afloat in the southwest Pacific, he’s struck by the outpouring of love, and the displays of gratitude from a grateful nation.

“It humbles me, makes me very humble. I just can’t believe it,” Vickers said.

Vickers is a fixture in the community and at parades for the veterans on Veterans Day, Memorial Day, July 4th and Labor Day. Vickers loves that he served his country and he loves talking about it too.


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