PHOTOS: 100 years and counting for WWII veteran

  • Charles gives his grandson, Nick, a pat on the head during Charles’s 100th birthday party in the Great Room at Havenwood Heritage Heights in Concord.The World War II veteran has three grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren with more on the way. Richey was in the ArmyAir Corps as a Master Sargeant and flew on the Burma Hump over the Himalayas. GEOFF FORESTER—Monitor staff

  • Charles Richey at his 100th birthday party in the Great Room at Havenwood Heritage Heights in Concord on Saturday, November 16, 2019. The World War II veteran has three grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren with more on the way. Richey was in the ArmyAir Corps as a Master Sargeant and flew on the Burma Hump over the Himalayas. GEOFF FORESTER—Monitor staff

  • Tim Richey gives his father, Charles, a kiss on the cheek during his 100th birthday celebration in the Great Room at Havenwood Heritage Heights on Saturday. Richey is a veteran of World War II having served in the ArmyAir Corps as a radio operator on missions on the Burma Hump over the Himilayas and served in the Air Force for 22 years, retiring as a Master Sargeant. Tim was born while Charles was serving in Libya. GEOFF FORESTER photos / Monitor staff

Monitor staff
Published: 11/27/2019 11:39:34 AM

As most of his family trickled in, Charles Richey smiled and looked around after the surprise of his 100 birthday party had worn off. But then his son, Tim Richey came in back and placed a kiss on his dad’s cheek. The smile disappeared but the warmth was still there.

Tim explained what this World War II veteran has as his code in life. “He has always been kind to people, straightforward with people in any situation. And a quiet, patient, caring, loving husband for 69 years,” Tim said.

With most of his family by his side, Richey celebrated at Havenwood Heritage Heights as they recalled his service in the Army Air Corps during World War II and then a 22-year career in the Air Force. Richey was a radio operator in a C-47 and converted B-24s and was part of the Burma Hump over the Himilayas during the war. Tim Richey relayed that his father once looked out a plane’s window and noticed treetops right below and blurted out to the captain, ‘are we supposed to be this low?’

Once when Tim was 10, he stayed out passed dark was sent to his room when he got home, banned from watching The Flintstones. After sitting in his room for awhile, his father appeared and asked if Tim had learned his lesson. He said, “But Dad, I stayed out too late.” Charles replied, “It’s okay, I love you. Come on down.” It taught me to be firm with discipline but do it with love. And I have passed that down to my sons and they have passed that down as well.”




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