More than 50 veterans honored at Chesterland elementary school

CHESTERLAND, OH (WOIO) - In Geauga County, students and faculty at Robert C. Lindsey Elementary School hosted a Veterans Day assembly to honor those that served in the armed forces.

The event was especially memorable for one veteran, who celebrated his 103rd birthday. Joe Dardis was an artilleryman in World War II, working in aviation. He said he joined the Navy, because it was the one branch to promise him he would be able to serve in the skies.

"I joined the Navy to see the world," said Dardis. "Right now, the Navy is a great place for it."

Dardis joined the military just two months after marrying his wife, Christine. The couple has been married for 75 years.

"She set me straight. Any time I tried to take a wrong path, she was there to straighten me out," said Dardis, laughing as he sat next to his wife.

The school presented Dardis with a cake, complete with candles 1-0-3, in honor of his 103rd birthday. Hundreds of elementary schoolers honored all the veterans with songs, poems, and speeches.

"It was really nice of them all to come, too, to take time out of their day to come and be here," said Student Council President Ruth Brobeck.

As for Dardis, who has a combined 21 grandchildren and great-grandchildren, having so many children honor his special day, meant a lot.

"I feel wonderful. I feel like I'm the luckiest guy in the world."

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