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Richard Overton, America's oldest living WWII vet, dies at 112


Richard Overton, the country’s oldest living man and WWII veteran, has died at age 112.

His cousin, Volma Overton Jr., confirmed the news to the Austin American-Statesman on Thursday.

The news came days after Overton was reportedly admitted into a hospital with pneumonia last week. He reportedly died in a rehab facility in Texas.

Overton served in World War II and had built a reputation for his liking for cigars and whiskey. Though he credited God for his long life, Overton told a local Fox station in a previous interview that his vices also helped as well.

“I been smoking cigars from when I was 18 years old, I’m still a smoking ‘em. 12 a day,” he said jokingly at the time.

Overton, who gained national prominence over the years for his longevity, had quite a few renowned visitors come to his home in recent years, including former Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

He had also been honored by former President Obama back in 2013 before a crowd of thousands in Washington on Veterans day.

"His service on the battlefield was not always matched by the respect that he deserved at home. But this veteran held his head high," Obama said at the time.       

Texas Rep. Michael McCaul acknowledged Overton’s death on Twitter shortly after new broke of his passing.

“Sad to learn of the passing of Richard Overton, whose life personified service to our country and local community,” McCaul said.

“I was blessed to know him and will always remember him as the star of the show when we opened the new VA clinic in Austin,” he added.

"With his quick wit and kind spirit he touched the lives of so many, and I am deeply honored to have known him," Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said in a statement Thursday, calling Overton "an American icon and Texas legend."

"Richard Overton made us proud to be Texans and proud to be Americans," the governor added. "We can never repay Richard Overton for his service to our nation and for his lasting impact on the Lone Star State."

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