Volunteer on USS Yorktown celebrates 95th birthday

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (AP) " A fighter pilot who flew missions in World War II from the USS Yorktown celebrated his 95th birthday on the ship, now part of a museum in South Carolina.

Local news outlets report that Bill Watkinson celebrated his birthday Monday on the ship where he serves as a volunteer guide.

Patriot's Point Naval and Maritime Museum spokesman Chris Hauff says Watkinson has been a volunteer for as long as Hauff can remember.

Watkinson lives in both Mount Pleasant and Raritan Township, New Jersey. In South Carolina, he's on the ship every day, chatting with visitors.

More than 100 staff and volunteer were on hand for the birthday celebration.

Watkinson says he flew patrol missions as the Japanese surrendered on the nearby battleship USS Missouri to end the war in 1945.


An earlier version of the story misspelled the name of Rarirtan Township, New Jersey.

This story has been automatically published from the Associated Press wire which uses US spellings

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