Austin's Richard Overton Celebrates His 111th Birthday

May 11, 2017

Today, America's oldest living World War II combat veteran celebrated his 111th birthday.

Richard Overton, born in Bastrop County in 1906, enlisted in the Army in 1940. He served in the South Pacific and left the military in 1945. He's been honored by everyone from Mayor Steve Adler to former President Barack Obama, who invited Overton to Washington, D.C. in 2013 to celebrate Veterans Day.

Overton celebrated his birthday with several events, including lunch at the UT Club and a party at his home in East Austin, which was open to the public. A portion of his street, Hamilton Avenue, was also symbolically dedicated in his honor.

Austinites from Overton's neighborhood gathered to celebrate his birthday.
Credit Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Veronica Silvas, Richard Sanchez and Loretta King (l-r) brought a cake for Overton.
Credit Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT
Richard Overton, center, enjoys one of his trademark cigars at his 111th birthday party on May 11, 2017.
Credit Gabriel Cristóver Pérez/KUT News

Overton was presented with a cake.
Credit Gabriel Cristóver Pérez/KUT News

Ted Scarborough (left) and fellow WWII veteran John Melching wish Overton a happy birthday.
Credit Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT
Friends and well-wishers gathered outside his Austin home.
Credit Gabriel Cristóver Pérez/KUT News

Overton enjoys a Tampa Sweet cigar.
Credit Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

A portion of Hamilton Avenue was symbolically renamed in Overton's honor.
Credit Gabriel Cristóver Pérez/KUT News