Victor Hetzel has been a resident at The Vicksburg Retirement Community since July 2013. On Oct. 8, he celebrated his 100th birthday.
Mr. Hetzel was born Oct. 8, 1919 to Richard and Nettie Hetzel in Ruston Louisiana, the fourth of fourth of 16 children.
Hetzel was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1943 and began training as a stevedore. He was assigned to the Aleutian Islands to build a transient port. Upon arrival he was given the job as first cook. Their duty was presumed completed in 1944, but when boarded on the ship to head to the United States, they were sent to Hawaii.
There he became Mess Sargent over a large facility feeding up to 5,000 meals daily. He was discharged at the end of World War II and arrived back home in December 1946.
He was again called back to active duty to set up a school for cooks at Fort Riley, Kansas. He completed building and the starting of the new school for many troops training in the Korean War.
Hetzel was discharged and continued to serve in the U.S. Army Reserves for three more years.
Hetzel spent most of his adult life, while home from active duty, in Wichita, Kansas. He met and married Margaret, the love of his life, and were married for 73 years. He worked for Montgomery Ward for 26 years and retired in 1962. He then went to work for the newspaper and retired from there in 1984. The couple moved to the Brownwood/Coleman area until the passing of his wife.