The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

July 8, 2013

Granby woman, WAC veteran, celebrates 100 years

GRANBY, Mo. — Eunice Lewis during World War II in 1943 learned her husband, George McFarland, had been captured by the Japanese.

She decided she needed to do something, so she joined the Women’s Army Corps.

On Monday, she celebrated her 100th birthday among dozens of well-wishers at Granby House nursing home. She turned 100 on Sunday and is among the oldest veterans of the WACs.

She served in the WACs from Sept. 1, 1943, to Dec. 16, 1945. Stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, she was responsible for writing the soldiers’ wills.

At the time, she was one of more than 150,000 women involved in the war effort. She received the American Theater Campaign Medal and the Good Conduct Medal.

Her first husband died sometime after the war, and she married Leon Lewis.

Lewis kissed the hands of her visitors on Monday.

Asked about turning 100, she said: “I don’t think much about it.”

She always was succinct when offering advice to younger generations.

“Look before you leap,” she said.

Among the items displayed on a table were a World War II-era photo of Lewis in her uniform, a Missouri House of Representatives resolution honoring Lewis, and recognition of Lewis entered into the Congressional Record by U.S. Rep. Billy Long, R-Mo.

There also was a painting of flowers, signed by Lewis.

“She taught art classes here in town” for many years, said Tammy Sherwood, activities director at Granby House.

Sherwood said Lewis has told her that when she was making out the wills of the soldiers, she had to be precise, because any mistake could cause big problems for the soldiers’ families.

“She loves attention,” Sherwood said. “She’s a special lady. She really is.”

Granby House employee Misty Shepherd agreed.

“She loves Bingo,” Shepherd said. “And she loves to make people smile.”

A delegation of state legislators, including Sen. Ron Richard, R-Joplin, and state Reps. Charlie Davis, R-Webb City, Bill Reiboldt, R-Neosho, and Bill Lant, R-Pineville, attended.

Lant had sponsored the House resolution two years ago.

“It was an amazing thing she did” in joining the WACs, Lant said. “In the situation with her husband and not knowing where he was or what his condition was, it was a wonderful gesture.”

History

The Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps became the Women’s Army Corps, part of the regular Army, on July 3, 1943.

Source: U.S. Army Center of Military History

1
Text Only
Local News
  • r072814dogbike.jpg Cross-country trip promotes animal adoption

    Where’s Bixby? Not the town in Oklahoma, but the dog on the back of a bicycle ridden by Mike Minnick. On Monday, the two were in Joplin, one stop on a cross-country bike trip to promote the adoption of dogs and cats from local shelters.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 4.3 magnitude quake reported in northern Oklahoma

    The U.S. Geological Survey says an earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 4.3 struck northern Oklahoma on Monday night.

    July 29, 2014

  • Update: 4 workers injured in SE Kansas oil refinery fire

    A Texas company says four workers at a southeast Kansas oil refinery were burned in an early morning fire.

    July 29, 2014

  • Seneca man draws concurrent term in sexual abuse case

    A 39-year-old man who sexually abused a girl over a four-year period in both Joplin and Seneca received a 15-year sentence Monday in Newton County that will run concurrently with a term he received earlier this year in Jasper County.

    July 28, 2014

  • Judge lifts seal on records in Parsons quadruple slaying

    A judge has rescinded his order sealing court records in the case of David Bennett Jr., who is accused of killing a Parsons woman and her three children.

    July 28, 2014

  • Defendant who pulled knife on ER doctor sent for treatment

    A man accused of pulling a knife on a Freeman Hospital West emergency room doctor pleaded guilty to a reduced charge Monday and was sentenced to the state prison system’s Institutional Treatment Center.

    July 28, 2014

  • Wal-Mart to build second local Neighborhood Market

    A second Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market store is planned for Joplin. The company has filed an application with the city to rezone nearly six acres of land on the west side of town in the tornado zone to build a new Neighborhood Market and gas station.

    July 28, 2014

  • r072814mailcar.jpg VIDEO: Train mail car trailered on Joplin's Main Street to Redings Mill

    With a police escort leading the way Monday, postal car No. 34 breezed through downtown Joplin en route to its new home in Redings Mill, where it was greeted by a welcome party of local residents and railroad enthusiasts.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo 1 Slideshow

  • Anti-landfill group seeks grand jury probe

    As more than 200 people filed into Riverton High School on Sunday to attend an anti-landfill group meeting, many stopped to sign a petition asking the Cherokee County District Court to summon a grand jury to investigate how land was acquired by the city of Galena for a proposed landfill.

    July 27, 2014

  • 072814_jd anderson.jpg VIDEO: Noel strongman advances on talent show

    The past week has been busier than normal for Noel resident J.D. Anderson. Members of the production crew for NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” told him they have shot more footage of him than of other contestants for the next episode. “They said I have the busiest schedule of anyone this week,” Anderson told the Globe in a phone interview Friday. “There’s so many fun things you can do with B-roll as a strongman.”

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

Must Read
Sports
Photos


Facebook
Poll

Given that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that electronic devices and communications are protected from searches and seizure without a warrant, do you think Missouri needs Amendment 9 added to its constitution?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Opinion
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter