Local Veteran Celebrates 98th Birthday

Local News Stories

ZANESVILLE, Ohio – A local veteran celebrated a very special milestone Saturday.

William McClelland spent the afternoon at the Zanesville VFW celebrating his 98th birthday!

McClelland, a World War II veteran, had one wish for the special day: he wanted to sit down and enjoy a drink with his fellow veterans.

He tells us his birthday isn’t actually until the 25th, but that he enjoyed getting to celebrate with everyone at a place near and dear to his heart!

“I’m very appreciative of it. I’ve been a member of VFW for decades. Since 1945, I think. And so, I’m familiar with these premises from the past, but I’m so happy to see it neat and clean and well ordered, see friends. And I want to be able to come here frequently,” he said.

He greeted his fellow veterans, taking time to talk and catch up with them and was even surprised with a very special quilt.

When asked the secret to reaching 98, he said he’s got a great community of people helping him out and despite some big life changes, he’s happy to still be making new friends and memories and getting to explore new things.

“I have a good shepherd who follows me and takes care of me. And I have an excellent caregiver that makes arrangements for me and I’m missing old friends and I miss the community where I lived in my own home since May of 1956, but I’m making new friends and getting nice views of new territory,” McClelland told us.

McClelland was stationed in England during his service with the Air Force’s 491st Bombardment Group and was also a professor at Muskingum University until his retirement in 1989. 

We hope you’ll join us in wishing Mr. McClelland a Very Happy Birthday!

Maggie Warren
Maggie was born and raised in Speedway, Indiana where she developed her love and passion for weather, IndyCar and F1, hockey, and baseball, especially the Detroit Red Wings and the Cincinnati Reds. When she's not at work, she enjoys binge-watching her favorite tv shows, writing, hiking, and doing pretty much any outdoor activity! Maggie graduated from Ball State University, where she majored in meteorology/climatology, in Fall 2020. While at Ball State, she was a member of the Storm Chase Team and Cardinal Weather Service. She is also a member of the American Meteorological Society. She loves exploring new places, so if you have any recommendations of places she should visit, let her know! And if you see her around town, don't be shy, say hi!