POW Featured in, The Greatest Generation, Gives Back
Lloyd Kilmer, a 92-year-old DAV member and World War II POW.
Lloyd Kilmer, a 92-year-old DAV member and World War II POW, is matter of fact about why he named DAV in his trust:
“This was my way of showing appreciation to other veterans – it’s that simple. Vets have always been a big part of my life so I included several veterans’ organizations in my trust, including DAV.”
He further explained: “A DAV service officer helped get my disability rating in the late 1990s. Prior to then, the VA wasn’t very active in recognizing veterans’ needs. Thanks to DAV, veterans were able to press for benefits for presumptive illnesses, such as mine.”
Kilmer didn’t linger long in describing his World War II service, his 10-month confinement in a German POW camp and the severe weight loss he endured. Typical of many veterans of his day, he skipped over any details of his extreme wartime suffering. Thankfully, Tom Brokaw captured Kilmer’s story, and those of many other World War II veterans who served without accolades, in his 1998 best seller, The Greatest Generation.
Kilmer married and had two sons after the war, then lost his wife after 50 years of marriage. As divine providence would have it, he met his current wife of 15 years, Ruth, at a POW meeting. Coincidentally, Ruth had recently lost her POW husband after 50 years of marriage. It was apparently a second marriage made in heaven because Kilmer quipped: “We like to say we have actually been married for 115 years.”
Since getting married, he and Ruth have worked as a team to help veterans who would otherwise be falling through the cracks. “When Ruth and I heard of some local POWs, through our DAV Chapter and other veterans’ meetings, we literally knocked on their doors to be sure they were getting the benefits to which they were entitled. The VA wasn’t getting the word out. It takes a POW to know a POW. It doesn’t take long to sort things out and help them. One time we even helped a colonel who thought he knew what he should be receiving but did not.”
At DAV, we cherish the story of every veteran’s service and what inspires them to give back to their fellow veterans. If you have named DAV in your estate plans, please tell us your story. Then allow us to honor you through the DAV Guardian Society, our appreciation to those who include DAV in their estate plans. Your future gift will change lives and bring hope to injured heroes who will need DAV for years and generations to come!
- If you have included DAV in your will or other estate plans, please let us know.
- You’ll be honored through the Guardian Society, or we can thank you quietly.
- For more information, or for our estate planning folder, please call 1-800-216-9802 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Legal address for your will or trust: DAV, P.O. Box 14301, Cincinnati, Ohio 45250; tax identification number: 31-0263158.