By Chris A. Durney
Department of Veterans Affairs
Special to The Nashville News-Leader
LITTLE ROCK – It’s not every day that the Department of Veterans Affairs gets to honor a hero of WWII due to their dwindling numbers, and it’s rarer still to be able to honor a veteran over 100 years old.
Marvin Hill, 103, of the small community of Dierks in Howard County, is, perhaps, the rarest of them all. Sporting his favorite cowboy hat, Hill is a character with a strong voice, sharp mind and singular wit. And, he just purchased a new pickup truck.
The Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System recently presented Hill with a special CAVHS coin to thank him for his service and sacrifice as an Army Air Corps Veteran, and to honor him as a member of the greatest generation. True to form, Marvin’s jokes and quick wit brought the house down.
In addition to the coin, Hill was presented a 45-year membership certificate by Arkansas American Legion Commander Mike Westergren. David Witte, Arkansas military liaison for Congressman Bruce Westerman, then read a submission to the Congressional Record recognizing Hill’s service and patriotism.
Dr. Margie Scott, Medical Center director, presented the coin to Hill.
“We do it in the traditional method of a military coin being handed off in a handshake,” said Dr. Scott. One side of the coin includes the phrase “where Veterans come first,” and the other side includes emblems from each branch of the service. CAVHS presents to coins to WWII Veterans while they are at one of the system campuses.