There are few left native Maine’s “Greatest Generation,” called upon to serve in the fight against Nazi Germany and also Imperial Japan. Most are well into their 90s, and also there may soon it is in a time as soon as no human being War II veterans remain.
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But top top Thursday in Orono, three of Maine’s remaining veterans from the era were able come share their reflections on their service and also how it readjusted them. They had gathered at the campus the the college of Maine because that the unveiling that a plaque honoring the an ext than 16 million americans who battled in world War II.
Carmine Pecorelli is 96but doesn’t show it. The Belfast residentstill has actually a for sure handshake, and also he presented a large smile Thursday as he functioned the gathered group of an ext than 70. Pecorelli served as a petty officer in the navy on a minesweeper in the battle of the Atlantic, the longest consistent military project of the war.
There to be an estimated 2,400 human being War II veterans in Maine, according to 2019 U.S. Census data, though that number is likely lower two years later. Just 154 were in Penobscot County.
Other significant living world War II veterans from or associated to Maine incorporate children’s book writer and also illustrator Ashley Bryan, Penobscot nation tribal elder Charles Shay — the only army veteran to attenda current D-Day commemoration previously this month in Normandy, France, where he now lives — and also painter Harold Garde.
Asked just how it felt being among the last human being War II veterans, Newhall equivocated. “I’m simply happy to it is in here,” that said.
Pecorelli was more abstract.
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“I feel grateful, and also I’ll lug the memory with me,” the said. “The body will go, however not the spirit.”