Moberly WWII veteran gets early birthday surprise

8 months 1 week 1 day ago Friday, May 17 2019 May 17, 2019 Friday, May 17, 2019 3:12:00 PM CDT May 17, 2019 in News
By: Melody Cox, KOMU 8 Reporter
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MOBERLY - A day shy of his 95th birthday, a World War II veteran had the early birthday surprise of a lifetime Friday.

Donald Kroner served at Normandy during WWII. He told his family he wanted to see bikes, specifically motorcycles, for his birthday. The nurses at Moberly Nursing and Rehab decided they could lend a hand.

The nurses and family reached out to Trustee's Cycle Shop, who posted about the early birthday surprise on its Facebook page. The post quickly went viral, bringing more than 50 bikers and their motorcycles to meet Kroner. 

"They all had commented on the post and said that they would be here," Mary Bell, a nurse at the facility who helped organize Friday's surprise, said. "It was a good thing to do for veterans. I think he really enjoyed it."

Kroner said the experience was overwhelming. 

"It was great, seeing those motorcycles," he said. "I got to shake people's hands. They all thanked me for my service." 

He was touched by what the community did to celebrate his birthday a day early. 

"To think that many people would come to see us vets," Kroner said. "This was a great way to celebrate it. Couldn't have done it better."

Bell said this was a great way to celebrate Kroner's birthday.

"We like to do everything we can for our residents," she said. 

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