Jim Lindstrom weighed 116 pounds and was 5-foot-5 when he entered the Navy at age 17 in 1941.
"I grew up in the Navy," said the blue-eyed veteran, who wore a U.S. Navy sweat shirt Friday. "When I left (the service) I weighed 175 and was 5-foot-91Ú2. The Navy was where I got my education."
Veterans such as 81-year-old Lindstrom were honored Friday afternoon by the American Legion Auxiliary Unit 4 at Evergreen Health Care.
After singing patriotic songs, some stumbled over the words to "Grand Ole Flag," Auxiliary members handed out about 50 gift bags to senior citizens at the center, some of whom fought in World War II.
The paper bags, stamped with "God Bless America," stars and the Statue of Liberty, contained soap, candy, facial tissues, socks and a deck of playing cards. Those who weren't diabetic got cookies. The bags are a small gesture to these Carson City veterans who traveled the world and contributed to the war effort.
August Circo, 88, joined the Air Force when he was 23 and spent about four years stationed on an island off the coast of Alaska, working on planes before they flew into battle.
Jerry Jones, a retired oral surgeon, was a medic in the Army.
The 77-year-old Carson City man joined at 18 and was part of the U.S. occupation forces in Germany from 1947 to 1948.
Even though he had no medical background at the time, Jones was stationed at the Army hospital in Munich.
"I had a lot of great experiences," he said. "I helped deliver a lot of babies. We were called the bedpan commandos - that was a joke."
Three-year-old Zoe Tetz, the daughter of Auxiliary member Jenn Tetz, walked over to Jones. "Happy Veterans Day!"
Jones said he encourages teens who don't know what they want to do with their life to consider the military. While in the Army, Jones realized he enjoyed working with his hands and working with patients. He pulled a lot of teeth. He came back from Germany and went into dental school.
His advice to the troops in the Iraq War: "Stay away from pesticides and maintain good oral hygiene."
n Contact reporter Becky Bosshart at email@example.com or 881-1212.