NewsMilitary Appreciation Month


WWII Veteran Frank Smith is 100 years old and still serving his Beatrice neighbors

Posted at 6:51 PM, May 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-23 19:51:46-04

BEATRICE, Neb. (KMTV) — Part of the Greatest Generation, Frank Smith was born May 5, 1922.

He enlisted in the Army when he was 18 years old and served for two years, including in World War II. When Smith returned to Nebraska, he farmed, then became a prison chaplain, and five years ago, looked for a way to continue to serve his Beatrice neighbors. Every weekday since, Smith has volunteered with Blue Rivers Area Agency on Aging.

Now, at 100 years old, he delivers as many as two dozen meals each day. Each comes with a hug.

"A hug is good medicine," Smith said. "It makes people know that somebody cares. And that's what I do."

Having endured and survived the ravages and tragedies of war helps Smith see and be the good.

"Our country is important. You're taking this TV without fear of being jailed for doing something in public — that's important. We have a government against which we can talk without being executed. These are things that people have forgotten," he said.

"And I pray to the Lord that someday, they'll remember who they are, what they are and where they are. This is our basic freedom that we enjoy so much. And that's why I'm doing this. That's why I'm a patriot. My government's important to me, although it's not always so good as it should be, but it's mine."

WATCH additional KMTV stories this Military Appreciation Month.

Download our apps today for all of our latest coverage.

Get the latest news and weather delivered straight to your inbox.