Frank Buckles is a Missouri native, born in Bethany. He died of natural causes at his home in Charles Town, West Virginia on Sunday.
Buckles just turned 110 years old on February 1.
As a baby-faced teenager, Buckles was determined to serve his country.
In 1917, after repeated rejections, Buckles convinced the military to let him enlist. He was only 16 at the time.
His service took him to England and France, where he worked mainly as a driver and warehouse clerk during World War I. During World War II, he was captured as a civilian prisoner of war and spent three years in prison camps.
Eventually, he made his way back to the United States. He's been honored over the years and became well known as the only surviving US veteran of World War I. In 2008, his hometown of Bethany held a ceremony to thank Buckles for his service. Buckles has been honored at various ceremonies, including at the White House and in Kansas City. Buckles had also been an advocate for a memorial honoring WWI veterans in Washington, D.C.
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon offered condolences to Buckles' family Monday. He said his passing is a good time to thank military veterans who are still living. Gov..Nixon encouraged everyone to visit the national World War I Museum at the liberty memorial in Kansas City to learn more about those who have served our country.