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Veteran as American as Apple Pie

THS Grad Evert Johnson Recalls History

Ciera+Henry%2C+THS+CAT+CHAT+Correspondent%2C+presents+Mr.+Evert+Johnson+an+American+flag+and+thanks+him+for+his+service+to+our+country+during+World+War+II.+
Ciera Henry, THS CAT CHAT Correspondent, presents Mr. Evert Johnson an American flag and thanks him for his service to our country during World War II.

Ciera Henry, THS CAT CHAT Correspondent, presents Mr. Evert Johnson an American flag and thanks him for his service to our country during World War II.

Ciera Henry, THS CAT CHAT Correspondent, presents Mr. Evert Johnson an American flag and thanks him for his service to our country during World War II.

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“I am one of the lucky ones. I am still here at age 93,” said Evert Johnson, a World War II Veteran and a 1942 graduate of Thayer High School in Thayer, MO.
Joe Johnson said his dad was a baker on a ship that was stationed in Oakland, CA. “I used to tease him and tell him that he made a lot of ‘dough’ when he was in the Navy.”

Evert Johnson-U.S. Navy World War II

Born in Thayer, Missouri on Dec. 27, 1923, Evert Johnson joined the Navy with a group of his high school buddies after he graduated THS.

According to History.com Adolf Hitler and his National Socialist (Nazi Party) signed treaties with Italy and Japan to further his desire for world domination. Hitler’s invasion of Poland in September 1939 resulted in Great Britain and France declaring war on Germany, and World War II had begun.

As history has recorded, over the next six years, the war would take more lives and destroy more land and property than any previous war. History.com also notes that “among the estimated 45-60 million people killed were 6 million Jews that were murdered in Nazi concentration camps” as part of what is now known as the Holocaust.

“War is the worst thing in the world. Being in it you know it is either kill or be killed,” said World War II Veteran, Evert Johnson. “All the men I was with wanted to live. We would do anything to live. I can recall crawling on my knees and digging dirt with my fingers,” Johnson said.

The duties assigned to Johnson in the Navy were to be the ship’s cook and baker. He had to cook meals for 800 to 1000 men at a time. “Goulash was one of our main dishes. It was mostly just macaroni and cheese. Once in a while we might get to add hamburger,” Johnson said. “Our best pie was apple pie. There was never any left when we made it, so it must have been good.”

‘As American as apple pie’ is a common phrase used to describe things that are undeniably American, like Uncle Sam, baseball and barbecues. Evert Johnson is a name that could be added to that list. “I am just a good ole’ country boy from southern Missouri and I love every human being on earth,” commented Johnson.

Evert Johnson in his THS Letterman’s Sweater-A 1942 Graduate

The Thayer High School football team won their first ever SCA Championship Evert’s senior year and he was on the team. “I loved playing football,” Johnson said with a smile. Every member of the Johnson family went to school in Thayer for all 12 years. Evert and Ruby and their three children, Bill (known as Billy Ray), Joe (known mostly by Jody), and their daughter, Denise. “Our sister received a certificate for not missing a single day of school all 12 of her years,” said Joe Johnson.

Mr. and Mrs. Evert Johnson

On August 15, 1945, Japan surrendered to the Allied Powers, and Japanese officials signed the surrender documents on September 2, 1945, ending the war. Today, in the year 2017, Mr. Evert Johnson, Word War II Vet, is confined to a residential care facility. “Dad is so humble he doesn’t understand people thanking him for his service. He feels that he did just what needed to be done. A few years ago he and I went to Washington D.C. to see the WWII memorial,” said Johnson’s son, Joe. “That generation is a proud and patriotic group. You just have to love them for who they are. In fact, we might not be here today if it wasn’t for the hard times and duty of that generation.”

Cards to thank Mr. Evert Johnson for his service during World War II can be sent to him at West Vue Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, 210 Davis Drive, West Plains, Missouri, 65775.

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1 Comment

One Response to “Veteran as American as Apple Pie”

  1. faye on December 29th, 2017 8:52 pm

    I would like to say that my sister,Ceira,has came a long way from where we first started and I love you so much sis! Nice job!

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