COLUMBIA - Dozens of cars drove by Ed McComb's home on Saturday to celebrate his 100th birthday. 

The WWII veteran stood beside his family waving and smiling as the parade drove by the house. 

"Not very many people know me, so, it can't be a very long parade," McComb said with a laugh before the event got started. 

Turns out it was quite the celebration.

The Columbia Police Department, Columbia Fire Department, members of the Patriot Guard, and Mizzou's ROTC were among those who drove by to honor the veteran on his milestone birthday.

"I hope he knows that we all care and that the community cares and that he didn't serve for nothing that he served for us," Pam Socha said, a local realtor who attended the parade. 

"I haven't saluted in a long time," McComb said after he saluted the ROTC members.

McComb was drafted into the Army when he was 19 years old. He served in both the European Theater and the Pacific Theater.

"When we got to Tokyo, there was only one four-story building left standing," McComb said. 

He said he was the fastest person in his platoon at setting up the mortar and preferred that to the machine gun section.

"The mortar you could set back on the hill here and shoot over it and with the machine gun you're sticking your head right up there...they could see you as well as you could see them," he said.

McComb also said his platoon even helped liberate a town in Czechoslovakia. 

"Took the Germans and marched them out," he said.

He has two children, three grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. He was married to his wife for nearly 70 years. 

McComb's daughter, Nancy McKinney, said she just wanted her dad to feel "honored" on his big day.

"Moving to a new place, he hasn't had a lot of friends. And so, I just want him to feel that people are thinking about him. Even if he doesn't see them that there are people out there that care about him," she said.  

McComb described the birthday parade as "breathtaking" and thanked everyone for attending. 

"The whole day surprised me," he said. "Thank you for coming out and they probably could all have been doing something that they would rather do than come out to see me."

He said his secret to making it to 100 years was "not smoking or drinking" and "having good genes." His mother lived until she was 97 years old.