World War II veteran celebrates 101st birthday Sunday at Topeka VA
By BRIANNA CHILDERS | The Topeka Capital-Journal | Published: April 15, 2019
(Tribume News Service) — A World War II veteran celebrated his 101st birthday Sunday, surrounded by family and friends at the VA Medical Center.
Art Haug, who has been at the VA for about five years, spent the afternoon smiling for pictures, eating birthday cake and reading birthday cards.
Randy Haug, Art Haug's son, said the day is pretty special for his dad.
"It's great for him," Randy Haug said. "Obviously he's in the Dementia Clinic here, so he's at that point where by tomorrow he will forget all about this, but it's good for him."
Randy Haug said he wasn't planning on throwing his dad a birthday party this year— they had a party for his 99th and 100th birthday— but when Randy Haug found out his dad was going to be presented with a recognition plaque, they decided to have another celebration.
"It probably boosts his energy level a little bit to keep him going," Randy Haug said. "I told him if you make it to 105, I'll have another party for you. I said, 'Are you going to make it to 105?' and he said, 'I might.' "
Randy Haug said his dad served in the Navy for about four years starting in 1941. He was an aviation mechanic.
After Art Haug finished serving, he went to school to learn about jet engines and restored old cars to make extra money, Randy Haug said.
Randy Haug recalls helping his dad restore an old car that he still owns today. He said his dad has inspired him quite a bit and taught him a lot.
"He always said you can do anything you want to, just use your head and common sense," Randy Haug said.
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