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Emma Didlake, America’s Oldest Veteran Passes Away, One Month After Meeting Obama

WASHINGTON — Emma Didlake, the nation’s oldest known veteran, passed away Sunday, one month after visiting the White House and meeting with President Barack Obama.   Didlake’s granddaughter told the San Antonio Express-News that the 110-year-old had felt tired over the past few days and showed signs of failing health.  “It was a month ago today that we went to the White House,” said Marilyn Horne. “I think she felt she had accomplished everything and could take her rest.”  At the age of 38, as a mother with five children, Didlake joined the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps and earned multiple medals for her service. After leaving the military, she became active in the civil rights movement: She joined the Detroit chapter of the NAACP, and marched with Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1963.   “We are so grateful that she is here with us today,” Obama told reporters after his July 17 meeting with Didlake. “And it’s a great reminder of not only the sacrifices that the greatest generation made on our behalf, but also the kind of trailblazing that our women veterans made, African-American veterans who helped to integrate our armed services,” Obama said.  Monday afternoon, the president released a statement about her passing, saying she “served her country with distinction and honor.”  “I was humbled and grateful to welcome Emma to the White House last month,” he said, “and Michelle and I send our deepest condolences to Emma’s family, friends, and everyone she inspired over her long and quintessentially American life.”

On Sunday, June 14th the first fans in the U.S. were invited to see a screening of TERMINATOR GENISYS at Camp Pendleton, California.
TERMINATOR GENISYS will open in theaters nationwide on July 1, 2015.


Former Green Beret and Texas Long Snapper Nate Boyer joining the NFL Seahawks

One of the best stories of the NFL Draft didn’t happen until the draft was over.  Nate Boyer, a 34-year-old former Green Beret, has been offered a contract as an undrafted free agent with the Seattle Seahawks.  “Yeah, I’ve done things that are more difficult,” Boyer told NFL Network’s NFL Total Access on Saturday. “You can’t really compare the two in a lot of ways, but this is a huge challenge in itself. This is the best athletes in the world. Just to get an opportunity and be able to compete… And I’m playing for a great team in a great city. I couldn’t be any more thrilled. Just for the chance that’s all you can ask for.”

After serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, he decided at age 29 that he better attend college, fearing he never would otherwise. In the process of matriculating at the University of Texas, Boyer also walked onto the football team even though he’d never played a competitive down in his life.  “I didn’t want to regret never playing, and I’d never had the opportunity,” Boyer told USA TODAY Sports. “It was always my favorite sport to watch.”  With the help of the incumbent snapper, he taught himself the craft and refined his accuracy in subsequent deployments while with the National Guard. The 5-foot-11 long snapper eventually won the Longhorns’ starting job.

Now he has found his way into the NFL.  “I played at 190 pounds mostly because in the summer time I was deployed, you know,” said Boyer, who now weighs 220 pounds. “So I had to stay at a fighting weight for Special Forces, it’s just a different job, they’re totally different worlds. So I had to be true to that. Putting weight was a challenge and it’s still a challenge.  “According to the Army Times, Boyer has multiple war-zone deployments to his credit, including to Afghanistan for two summers as a member of the Texas Army National Guard.  Boyer learned that his NFL dream was coming true on NFL Network cameras, getting the call from Seahawks coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider.