WWII U.S. Army Veteran Celebrates 90th Birthday

WWII U.S. Army Veteran Celebrates 90th Birthday

CREATED Feb 22, 2014

JOELTON, Tenn. – A United States Army Veteran who fought in World War II celebrated his 90th birthday Saturday.

Family and friends gathered to celebrate Art Rawlings' birthday at the Shadowbrook home in Joelton. The event center was his childhood home before he left for war. He said it's milestones like this that let him reflect on all he's done in life.

"I think about surviving the flights. I think about my old crew which they all deceased except for myself," he said. "I think about the days in prison camp that we spent together."

Rawlings was only 19-years-old when he enlisted in the United States Army in 1943. During his years of service, he survived being shot down three times and was briefly imprisoned in a German POW camp.

After being in the POW camp for several months, Rawlings was rescued by the Third Army and General Patton. He weighed only 96 pounds when he was found.

After the war, Rawlings returned home to Joelton, where he has lived for nearly 70 years. He said he plans to live until the ripe age of 100.