Family of World War II veteran help him celebrate 97th birthday

Updated: Apr. 20, 2020 at 8:27 PM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Social distancing is causing many to think outside of the box when it comes to celebrations. Monday afternoon, the family of Homer Jones surprised him for his 97th birthday, but had to do his party a little bit differently this year.

The facility where Jones lives, Wilshire Place Assisted Living in Lubbock, has been on lockdown since March 28, according to the family. Even though the family is separated by the lockdown, they found a unique way to celebrate.

Dorinda Cooper is one of five of Homer Jones’ children. She said, “I just decided since we couldn’t see him that we needed to do something to make it a special day. We usually get together as a family for birthdays.”

The family of Homer and Jo Jones celebrated outside of the facility with a sign and sang Happy birthday as the couple celebrated Homer’s birthday inside and watched a video sent to him by all of his grandchildren and other family members.

Homer Jones has been featured on KCBD several times, once in a previous segment called 'hometown hero.'

Previous story: Homer Jones, a Hometown Hero

Previous story: World War II vet shares story of escape from German POW camp

Jones is a World War Two Army Veteran and was a prisoner of war in Germany for four months. He eventually he was able to escape.

“After he got out of the service. He finished his degree with GI Bill got a degree in vocational education, from Tech,” said Homer Jones, Jr., “And in 1948, they moved to Wellman and he became the first and he was the only Ag teacher at Wellman High School for 37 years."

The father of five also held many other jobs, including owning a grocery store.

“He also preached so he did three jobs,” said Cooper, “And he, after he retired from teaching, then he went to work at the gin in Wellman and worked until he was 80.”

The family says they talk to Mr. and Mrs. Jones almost every day and bring them food, cookies, and cakes when they can.

Even though this birthday is different from all the others, the family said it’s still a memorable one.

“I mean, just the times are going to be memorable,” said Jones, Jr.

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