EntSun News

Popular on EntSun

Similar on EntSun

World War II Veteran celebrates 98th birthday as Veterans Day Parade Grand Marshall

EntSun News/10964423
TULSA, Okla. - EntSun -- Bill Parkers father introduced his newborn son to the world 98 years ago, "My son's name is William Norman Parker.  He is born to be a cowboy, will grow up a cowboy, and will die a cowboy." And this suits Bill just fine, as he still rides horses at 98 years young.  "If I hadn't had to go fight the Germans, I would have been a champion bull rider".

Bill was a wire cutter in the 1st wave on Omaha Beach on D-Day.  The wire cutters had to clear the barbed wire out so that the following soldiers could proceed beyond the sandy beaches.  "They told us if we didn't get the wire cut, we were supposed to throw our bodies over the top of the wire and let the soldiers walk over us.  We decided that we weren't gonna let that happen."  Until his June 2022 visit to Normandy, Bill couldn't sleep with the nightmares of his experiences.  "After seeing the women and children on those beaches, I don't have nightmares anymore."

More on EntSun News
Bill was 1 of 35 men on an amphibious craft that was hit by a shell after Bill and 4 other soldiers jumped out into the chest deep water.  Bill was part of the Army's 116th Infantry's 2nd Battalion. Bill traveled to Belgium in 2021 for the Anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge, and then to Normandy in June 2022.  In November of 2022, Bill was honored at two ceremonies as he was awarded the French Legion Medal of Honor from the French Consulate in both Broken Arrow and Enid, Oklahoma.  Bill was also a Veterans Day Parade Marshall in Ponca City as well as the Grand Parade Marshall in Claremore.

Early 2023, Bill will be featured in a television story by Operation: Healing Heroes on the Discover Channel.  Two podcasts feature interviews with Bill on the Derek Duvall Show and The Warrior Next Door Podcast.  Bill has upcoming interviews with the Manchester Metropolitan University in England as part of their WWII soldier interview studies.

More on EntSun News
In 2023, Bill will be inducted into the Oklahoma Military History Museum. Bill's incredible story is one of a small-town Oklahoma Choctaw boy that leaves his true love behind to serve his country and be the first boots on Omaha Beach on D-Day.  His remarkable story also includes meeting General Eisenhower, almost losing his foot, later taking another wound to the shoulder and bonding with a little orphaned Russian boy that was later sneaked into the US inside of a soldier's bag.

Tonya Blansett

Source: Tulsa Air and Space Museum, Inc.
Filed Under: Lifestyle

Show All News | Report Violation


Latest on EntSun News