HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Huntsville is home to many great things: The Trash Pandas... Redstone Arsenal... The Rocket Center! But Huntsville is also currently home to what is believed to be the oldest veteran in the state of Alabama, WW2 veteran Major Wooten.
And on Friday, December 3, not only did Wooten, also known as Pop Pop, turn 105, he also received the French Legion of Honor, the highest decoration given in France.
Wooten's special night was night full of veterans, birthday cake, honor and song.
"We are very, very proud of him and we're very proud to call him our Pop Pop, and I feel like the community, you know, feels like he's their Pop Pop and we embrace that and love that," said Granddaughter of Major Wooten, Holly Wooten McDonald.
During his birthday ceremony, a proud Pop Pop and a proud veteran of WW2 sings along to a song he and friend Singer/Songwriter, Wood Newton, wrote about his time serving:
"Not every soldier in a war fights it with a gun, somebody had to make sure those trucks and tanks and trains would run, like private Major Wooten of the Railroad Brigade," Newton sings. "They got the job, they're part of a generation we call great. They got the job done, sent it down the track, got the job, then they made it back."
Dedicated is the word that comes to mind when thinking of WW2 vet, dedicated to not only his family...
"My dad had passed away in 2016 and you could just tell he had a new mission in life and that was to make sure that we were okay," said McDonald."
But dedicated to his country as well...
"He was drafted, he was not career military but his take on it was, my country needs me and i've been called to do this and I will do this for my country," said McDonald.
So, Wooten's family, the people of Huntsville and now the country of France all recognize Major Wooten as a hero, a 105-year-old hero.