14 September 2009

RIP: Gertrude Noone

Gertrude Noone
30 Dec 1898-10 Sep 2009

The oldest military veteran in the world has died. ZUI this article from the Los Angeles Times:
Gertrude Noone was a 44-year-old insurance policy clerk for Travelers in Hartford, Conn., in 1943 when she enlisted in the Women's Army Corps.

When she died peacefully Thursday morning at age 110 at an assisted-living facility in Milford, Conn., she was the oldest known living military veteran in the world -- a fact that made her proud.


Noone, who rose to the rank of sergeant first class, was chief clerk of the large dispensary at Ft. Myer, Va., by the time she left the Army in 1949. She then worked as an administrative assistant at a private psychiatric hospital in Stamford, Conn., until retiring in 1962.

Bob Johnson, a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel who has spent the last 19 years helping World War I and World War II veterans receive recognition and awards, said the title of the world's oldest known living military veteran passed to Noone when British World War I veteran Harry Patch died July 25 at 111.


One of 10 children, Noone was born Dec. 30, 1898, in Ansonia, Conn.

All nine of Noone's siblings predeceased her. The most recent was her sister Esther Balogh, who served as an Army nurse during World War II and died in 2003 at 103.

Noone, who never married, lived with Balogh for many years until 2002, when she moved into Carriage Green, where she joined the gardening club and participated in a weekly exercise group.

There are still three living World War I veterans, but the oldest - John Babcock, a Canadian now living in the US - is only 109.

Noone, who at the time of her death was the 60th-oldest person in the world, is the fourth supercentenarian listed by the Gerontology Research Group (GRG) to die since the death of Harry Patch. The others were Ethel Johnson of Ohio (28 Sep 1897-29 Jul 2009), Sarah Wilkins of Iowa (27 Mar 1899-8 Aug 2009) and Pasqualina Franco of Ontario (2 Dec 1898-16 Aug 2009).


Dorothy L said...

Trying to reach the Bob Johnson who has tried to help ww 2 veterans receive recognition...my aunt, now 95, served as a nurse at an amputation center (believe it was named Lawton) in Georgia during ww2. Army several times refused her indoctrination and finally allowed her to join the army if she promised not to request transfer overseas (very logical from the army's side. Please contact me at dauur@aol.com and let me know if I have the correct bob johnson.

Dorothy L said...

Oops. My email was incorrect. Please use dallur@aol.com.

With thanks.