By Patti Mengers, Delaware County Daily Times
When Henry Eugene Vickers was celebrating his third birthday on Nov. 11, 1918, at his home in the Oakmont section of Haverford, allies on the Western Front of Europe were celebrating the end of World War I.
Armistice Day, which in 1954 came to be known in the United States as Veterans Day, was to mark “the war to end all wars,” but by his 24th birthday, Vickers learned that that would not be the case. World War II — the deadliest war in the history of the world — had begun and, from 1942 to 1946, he was in the thick of it.
Each year on his birthday, the number of those honored for serving their country has continued to grow and conflicts have continued to claim the health and lives of American troops. Wednesday, Ret. Navy Lt. H. Eugene Vickers will lead the salute to his fellow veterans as grand marshal of the Veterans Day Parade that, in keeping with the World War I time of armistice, starts at 11:11 a.m. at Barrall Ball Field in Media.
“He has had experiences very few people living today have had,” noted Media Mayor Bob McMahon.