102 year old WWII veteran tells his story

Published: Nov. 7, 2019 at 10:20 PM CST
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This World War 2 veteran spends his days playing cards and watching birds at the Callaway Good Life Center. Eugene Horst is 102 years young.

He's lived a life that includes fighting in the pacific theater against the Japanese. He was a combat marine from 1939 to 1944. Eugene didn't want to talk much about his years of service, he does remember fighting the Japanese on an island called Tarawa and burying over a thousand marines.

"During the service, some trying things that really really, kind of, get to you after you sit back after its over with. You sit back and you never forget them," said Eugene, "We lost a lot of friends."

He was married to the love of his life for 74 years. His wife Eleanor died just two years ago. Together they had two children, a son and a daughter. The family lived in the Halsey area where he was a carpenter and a home builder. He became famous for his rose carvings and furniture building.

Eugene and his family lived in Halsey for decades and they managed the 4H camp for several years. He helped build a big lodge, 9 cabins, a couple bath houses and more. These buildings were used for camps, weddings, and more. His wife Eleanor helped cook and managed records for 26 years. One of his valued memories with his wife is fishing.

Eugene was eager to share the secret to living a long life in the Sandhills.

"Want to do things you enjoy, you know. So many people have things that it's just an old job you know, but there's more to it than that," said Eugene.

He says that life has been good to him.

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