The Senate passed a resolution honoring the life of Richard Overton on Thursday, in expression of a “deep appreciation for the outstanding and important service” that he gave to the United States.
The 112-year-old was the nation's oldest man and had been the oldest living World War II veteran since 2016. He died on Dec. 27 and was buried at the Texas State Cemetary on Saturday,
according to The Dallas Morning News.
Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas)
introduced a resolution on Jan. 8 that outlined Overton's life from birth through his service in World War II to his becoming the oldest surviving World War II veteran in 2016, before offering the Senate's “heartfelt sympathy” to his family. Co-sponsored by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Sen. Gary Peters (D-Mich.), it passed by voice vote on Thursday.
Richard Arvin Overton was born May 11, 1906 in Bastrop County, Texas, before he enlisted in the Army in 1940 and served in the Pacific theater from 1942 to 1945, the resolution said. Serving with the all African-American 1887th Engineer Aviation Battalion, he was on Guam, Palau, and Iwo Jima and attained the rank of corporal.
Overton became the oldest surviving World War II veteran on May 3, 2016, after fellow World War II veteran Frank Levingston passed away at 110.
“Richard Overton is a United States hero who exemplified strength, sacrifice, and service to the country,” the resolution said.
You can read the full resolution, S. RES. 10, below:
Honoring the life of Richard Arvin Overton.
Whereas, on May 11, 1906, Richard Arvin Overton was born to Gentry Overton, Sr., and Elizabeth “Lizzie” Overton in Bastrop County, Texas;
Whereas, in 1940, Richard Arvin Overton enlisted in the Army and began his military service at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas;
Whereas, from 1942 to 1945, Richard Arvin Overton bravely served in the Pacific theater, including in Guam, Palau, and Iwo Jima, with the 1887th Engineer Aviation Battalion, an all African-American unit, until the conclusion of World War II;
Whereas Richard Arvin Overton attained the rank of corporal in the Army;
Whereas Richard Arvin Overton earned the Combat Infantry Badge, the Meritorious Unit Commendation, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the American Defense Service Medal, the American Campaign Medal, the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, and the Expert Rifle Marksmanship Badge;
Whereas Richard Arvin Overton returned to Austin, Texas, after the end of World War II and resided there until his death;
Whereas, on November 11, 2013, Richard Arvin Overton was honored by former President Barack Obama at Arlington National Cemetery for his courage and commitment to service in combat zones such as Pearl Harbor, the Marshall Islands, Guam, Palau, and Iwo Jima;
Whereas, on January 3, 2015, Richard Arvin Overton represented The Greatest Generation at the 2015 United States Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas;
Whereas, on May 3, 2016, Richard Arvin Overton became the oldest surviving veteran of the Armed Forces after the death of Frank Levingston, a fellow World War II veteran;
Whereas, on May 11, 2016, Richard Arvin Overton attained 110 years of age and became a supercentenarian;
Whereas, in Austin, Texas, May 11th of each year is designated as “Richard Overton Day” in honor of Richard Arvin Overton's birthday;
Whereas, in 2017, the city of Austin, Texas, officially renamed the street on which Richard Arvin Overton resided to “Richard Overton Avenue”;
Whereas Richard Arvin Overton died on December 27, 2018;
Whereas Richard Arvin Overton will be laid to rest with full military honors at the Texas State Cemetery in Austin, Texas; and
Whereas Richard Arvin Overton is a United States hero who exemplified strength, sacrifice, and service to the country: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Senate—
(1) extends its heartfelt sympathy to the family of Richard Arvin Overton on the occasion of his death;
(2) honors the life of Richard Arvin Overton and his service to the United States;
(3) honors and, on behalf of the United States, expresses deep appreciation for the outstanding and important service of Richard Arvin Overton to the United States; and
(4) respectfully requests that the Secretary of the Senate communicate this resolution to the House of Representatives and transmit an enrolled copy of this resolution to the family of Richard Arvin Overton.