Frank Buckles (1901 - 2011)

Posted: Wednesday, March 02, 2011 by Travis Cody in

Cpl Buckles, 16 in 1917
Frank Buckles, the last living American WWI veteran and the last of three surviving veterans world wide, has passed.  He was 110.

The two remaining veterans are Claude Stanley Choules of the UK, who served in the Royal Navy, and Florence Beatrice Green (nee Patterson) of the UK, who served in the Royal Air Force Women's RAF.

Mr Buckles was the oldest verified WWI veteran at the time of his death.  He served as a corporal in the army from August 1917 until January 1920, as a member of the 1st Fort Riley Causal Detachment.  He drove ambulances and motorcycles.  He was also a civilian POW in World War II.

He spent his later years as an advocate for the restoration of the War Memorial in Washington DC, and for its dedication as the national memorial for World War I.  

Mr Buckles has said that the secret to his long life is hope.  He said that he lived such a long life because he "never got in a hurry".

From Mr Buckles' website:
A diligent patriot his entire life, Frank Woodruff Buckles served his nation for eleven decades.

As America's last surviving veteran witness to the First World War, his life experiences and perspective are a living artifact...

It is the nature of time that they leave us.  I make the choice granted me by liberty and freedom to remember their service and sacrifice, and to honor it always.

Peace to you, Mr Buckles.  You earned it.

Frank Woodruff Buckles
1 February 1901 - 27 February 2011


  1. Thanks for this. My husband told me about this gentleman's passing and it had an effect on me, though I knew nothing of him previous to hearing about his death.

    I like that you always pay tribute to these people who haved served and to the days in history that should not be forgotten. The reminder is appreciated.

  1. Akelamalu says:

    Lovely tribute to someone who defended his country and survived to a wonderful age. :)

  1. Anonymous says:

    I echo Akelamalu's thoughts. I immediately thought of you when I heard this news. Sad that our world had to experience such a war, but happy that he lived a very full life.

    Rest in peace, solider.

  1. Travis, can you imagine any 16 year old in today's soceity doing something like this man did?

    Thank you for the beautiful tribute to this soldier.

  1. 110. Wow I don't imagine I'll make it that far although it would be nice.

  1. Coco says:

    Remembering is important. In his life, this man made a difference. That, to me, is a life well-spent.

  1. Rest In Peace,Frank.

  1. WOW

    Perfect post Travis. You dedication to ensure these gentlemen are honored is amazing

  1. Clancy: I like to think that the ones I'm able to do stand in for everyone who serves. I wish I could pay tribute to them all individually.

    Akelamalu: It's important to me to do this, and to do it as well as I can.

    Lois: From what I read, he seemed like a fine old gentleman.

    Pam: I actually can imagine it.

    Charles: Quite the respectable age.

    Coco: Well said.

    Mike: I suspect he shall.

    V: It's a small thing to do, but it's important to me to do it.

  1. Mr. Buckles lived through some of the best and some of the worst times that this country has seen. He was a hero indeed. Rest peacefully sir.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Trav: Beautiful tribute to one to whom we owe so much. Aside from his service to his country, imagine all the changes in the world that Mr. Buckles lived to see. It's mind-boggling!

  1. Wonderful post and tribute.
    What an extraordinary man.

  1. Julie says:

    I read that the daughter...or some relative is trying to allow him to "lie in state" in the Rotunda. Not sure if it happened or not and I'm not sure of the qualifications were met. But they should have been!