STOCKTON, Calif. (CNN) – Maj. Bill White served in World War II, survived the Battle of Iwo Jima and went on to continue a long career in the U.S. Marine Corps receiving a purple heart.
White keeps his proudest memories tucked away on his bookshelf and the 104-year-old veteran said he was hoping his collection was going to grow a little bigger this Valentine’s Day.
For Valentine’s Day, White said he wanted to add to his collection with cards from people near and far.
Well, Operation Valentine turned out to be a huge success with Maj. White already receiving 25,000 cards and gifts from people around the globe thanking him for his service.
Some came from as far away as Brazil and Japan. Others were made by students at Larson Elementary School in California.
“Makes me feel good inside because he fought in the war for us, so I wanted to make him happy by drawing a Valentine’s Day card,” said Nolan Palicio, a student.
“When it first started I thought maybe we’d get 100, maybe a thousand at most. I never expected the amount of cards we gotten,” White said.
With three weeks left to go until Valentine’s Day, there’s no telling how big Major White’s pile of well wishes will grow.
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