Lt. Colonel William G. Poulos, WWII veteran, turns 100 years old

Posted September 29, 2017

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ccording to the Veterans Administration nearly 365 World War II veterans die every single day. Out of the 16 million Americans who served during World War II approximately 558,000 are alive today. I recommend that the next time you see a veteran wearing their “World War II veteran” hat you walk over and shake their hand. Tell them thank you.

The other day we were able to do just that for Lt. Col William “Bill” Poulos who turned 100 years old on September 16, 2017. Bill joined the Army Air Corps in 1942 and retired from the United States Air Force Reserves in 1977. Bill received training as a B-29 bombardier and navigator and was instrumental in a new technology at that time called radar. Based on his experience and skill Bill was chosen to organize radar schools in India and at Chatham Army Airfield in Savannah, Georgia. Bill served as USAF Reserve Florida State Director of Education and retired as Executive Director of Civil and Criminal Warrants Division, Broward County Sheriff’s Office. On top of a stellar career he was also a family man and has been married to Esther Poulos for 72 years.

As Bill arrived to his birthday party with family and friends he was greeted by members of the Florida Patriot Guard, one of them being an Air Force veteran. The Pinellas County Veterans Council Honor Guard Presented the Colors and led everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance. Veterans Funeral Care then presented Bill with an authentic 48 star flag in honor of his service during WWII. Lastly, he was awarded a quilt by Jeanne Dickson from Quilts of Valor Foundation.

As funeral directors, we often do not get the opportunity to meet these great men and women. After the eulogy we find ourselves saying, “Man I wish I had met that guy”. It is always fun to¬†explain to families the difficult promotions or the meaning of specific medals that the veteran was awarded. That Saturday was more special because Bill got to hear it and enjoy it with his children and grandchildren standing next to him.

Of the 558,000 WWII veterans still alive today we think they all deserve a party. Next time you get the chance to meet one of them, make sure to thank them.

With a respect that is hard to describe,

Thank you Bill