My friends: Today we say farewell to the absolute Last Of The Last. The final surviving combatant of and witness to World War I has passed on. Claude Choules tried signing up as a bugler at the age of 13 and ended up joining the Royal Navy one year later. Claude was also the last person on Earth to have served in both World War I and World War II. He was a seaman in World War I and defused mines in World War II. Claude served in the military for over four decades. He was 110 years old.
Here are a couple articles:
A number of photographs of Claude can be seen here:
Al Jazeera reports on Claude Choules:
Some great interview clips in this one:
One of the many interesting points about him is that he remembers the first time an automobile rode into his town. Claude was not sure if the automobile would gain any popularity and according to his daughter, he did not get a car until he was 50 years old.
Claude lived a full life, was a sincere family man, was very satisfied with his accomplishments and stated he would do it all over again if he could. All of this is testament to the fine man he was.
A very hearty salute to the last man on Earth who served in the Great War. He earned his rest. RIP.
I am a(n) researcher and archivist.
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