Independence County veteran honored with his own day

(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

INDEPENDENCE COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - An Independence County veteran was honored Monday with a proclamation by the county judge for his own day to honor his service to our country.

Lloyd Gathright was born and raised in Batesville.

"On 7th and Rock Street," he said. "They just recently tore down the old house that I was born in."

Nov. 13, 2017, was declared Sergeant Lloyd Gathright Day to recognize his service.

"It's a real honor," Gathright said. "It came unexpectedly. I had no idea that I would be honored."

Gathright joined the United States Army in December 1940.

He served in World War II, during which he was stationed in Alaska for nearly three years.

"It was suspected that the Japanese would invade America through Alaska," he said. "I think it did something to keep the Japanese from invading this country from the north."

He also served during the time of the Korean War and the Vietnam War.

And his life was just as interesting after that service.

"I'd played with a band, a traveling band," Gathright said. "I did work as a blacksmith for a while. I can shoe horses."

"I enjoyed my work in the machine shop. I was a machinist for a while."

"I worked a small ranch, but I just got too old and physically I was unable to continue it."

It took Gathright quite a few years to accomplish all of those things, though.

"My birthday is September 20 and I just passed my hundredth birthday," he said.

He has some advice to those who want to live to be 100.

"Just don't die early," Gathright said. "Keep hanging in there!"

But Gathright claims to be a master gardener as well, so you might want to eat some vegetables while you're at it.

"Try to live and eat healthy," he said. "That has a lot to do with it too."

Copyright 2017 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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