Millersport veteran celebrates 100th birthday, family surprises him with cards from across US


MILLERSPORT, Ohio - Good news travels fast. Thankfully, well-wishes travel a bit slower.

Don Jewell received a surprise, Friday, on the day he celebrates turning 100.

"You reached 100," he said while reading a birthday card. "What a milestone!"

So many cards and letters were sent to his Millersport home from people he's never met.

"Happy birthday from Winfield, West Virginia," Jewell said reading from another card.

His century has been a full one. He was one of 10 siblings. Today, he and his youngest sister are the only ones still alive. He spent 67 years with his love, June, before she passed away 12 years ago. Their house in Millersport was purchased in 1951 for a price Jewell says was "right through the nose" at $7,300.

He skipped the eighth grade because teachers said he was too smart. He graduated high school at 16. A smiling, uniformed Jewell smiles at him from a frame in his living room from when he was 24 years old.

"Look at this ugly face and that's a good looking guy," he said, motioning towards the photograph.

He served in World War II with the Air Force and was promoted to Master Sergeant. He says what he remembers most were his men.

"The training and stuff that they got and how nice they made their master sergeant feel," he said.

His service is also mentioned in some of the well-wishes and cards he received.

"I also want to thank you for your service to our country and in the Air Force," one card read.

The cards know much about him.

"Congrats on skipping eighth grade," Jewell read from one card. "How'd somebody know that?"

His great-granddaughter, Cassie, recently put a post on Facebook asking for cards to help Jewell celebrate his special day. And on his birthday, he opened more than 30 cards and letters from across the country.

"It's actually been an honor to me to know that people are looking at me as being a person 100 years old," Jewell said.

Jewell now has five generations of family near him around the Millersport area.

If you would like to send Jewell a card or letter, you can send them to:

Don Jewell
PO Box 63
Millersport, Ohio 43046