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100-year-old World War II veteran looks back

100-year-old World War II veteran looks back

Source: Canva

June 12, 2024 7:46 AM CDT
By: Lisa M. Hale

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PULASKI, WI – (WGBW & WISS) – With a parade and a trip to Normandy to observe the 80th anniversary of D-Day, 100-year-old Eugene “Jack” Kraszewski of Pulaski, a World War II veteran, has received a lot of attention recently. But, he doesn’t think he deserves it.

“It’s an honor. I don’t deserve all the credit. Wherever I go I get my hand shaken, because I have a hat that I wear, that is a World War II hat. They all thank me for my service.”

Kraszewski, who celebrated his 100th birthday in April, recently returned from Normandy. He said the beach looked different to him than it did on the day he and thousands of Allied troops stormed it in 1944. But he said his favorite part of the trip was paying homage to the troops that didn’t come back.

D-Day wasn’t the only historical event in World War II Kraszewski participated in. He was also part of the Battle of the Bulge.

“The fight wasn’t the worst. It was the cold. Oooh, it was so miserable cold. I was on a 50-caliber machine gun, sitting in that iron turret. Eh. I was stiff, just frozen all of the time I was in there. That’s war I guess. It never left. It was there 24/7, that cold.” 

It may have been cold, but the people of Belgium and France were warm.

“We were there overnight, and in the morning when we got up, the ladies brought us some vegetable soup. Now man, that was the best soup I ever ate in my life. And those people didn’t have anything, because the Germans controlled them all these years. And yet they shared what they had with us.”

Kraszewski was a guest on Civic Media’s Maino and the Mayor show

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