Honoring our heroes: 13 World War II vets honored at local nursing home

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BLACK RIVER FALLS, Wis. (WEAU) -- People across the nation and right here in the Chippewa Valley are gathering this weekend to mark Veterans Day.

Making sure no veteran is forgotten on this day, a special ceremony was held for residents at a local nursing home.

WEAU 13 News was there as World War II vets were thanked for their service.

Residents and their families came together Sunday morning at Pine View Care Center in Black River Falls.

The local post of the American Legion put on the special ceremony for resident veterans.

Ken Schoolcraft said it's their mission to thank vets no matter where they live.

“We don't want the veterans to feel like they're forgotten,” Schoolcraft said.

13 World War II veterans reside at Pine View and staff said that's a high number for a center of its size.

Public Relations Director Mary Woods said the vets are a source of pride for the nursing home.

“They signify a very important part of our lives and freedom,” Woods said.

Each one of them is a witness to history.

Bill Adams was stationed at Pearl Harbor on that fateful day in 1941 when the base was bombed by Japan.

His ship was spared on December 7, but the next day?

“They pulled out a 500 pound bomb that didn't go off. It was directly under our ship. We were blessed that nothing bad happened to us,” Adams said.

Harold Ludemar also served in the Pacific in World War II.

He said Veterans Day is important, because it helps people remember the horrible ordeals service members had to go through to continue our way of life.

“Some of them have been through an awful lot. I was under fire a few times from the Japanese,” Ludemar said.

But it goes beyond Veterans Day.

Local school kids often visit the center to hear stories from the greatest generation.

“They talk to them and have some good lessons of life from those veterans,” Woods said.

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