World War II Veteran receives a hero's sendoff

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Gilbert Cranmer Gilbert Cranmer
Gilbert Cranmer Gilbert Cranmer
(KAKE) -

For miles and hours riders from Oklahoma and Kansas escorted World War II Veteran, Gilbert Cranmer, back to his home in Wellington.

His grand kids say Cranmer who recently passed away would be humbled to see this sight.

Kenneth Ault said, “his comment would be, ' you guys are making too much fuss over me.'”

He served in the United States Navy during World War II where he saw intense combat.

Ault said, “he went in when he was 18 years old. Enlisted in 1942 in the United States Navy. In 1943, was the first time he went overseas. In 1944, he was aboard a ship called the SS Morrison R. Waite which was in the battle of the Leyte Gulf in the Philippines. For 40 days they were attacked by Japanese airplanes. The kamikaze pilots, torpedo bombers. Grandpa was injured and received a Purple Heart. He was actually knocked overboard and rescued by Germans who said they hated Hitler.”

Cranmer’s granddaughter, Jennifer Ault said, “knowing what he went through and the stories that we have heard. it's just, you can't imagine it.”

Oklahoma Patriot Guard Riders wanted to honor his service. The riders escort his body from hundreds of miles, from Texas to Wellington, Kansas.

Oklahoma Patriot Guard Rider, Jerry Estle said, “there is nothing that makes us feel better than to stand in a flag line or do an escort for one of our Veterans and hold that American flag. It's one of the most beautiful things you'll ever see.”

For Cranmer’s loved ones, saying goodbye has been difficult but they feel honored to part of this hero’s sendoff.

Jennifer said, “it was overwhelming, words can't experience how I appreciated it.”

Kenneth said, “seeing all these guys show up and be a part of this was really a great experience. We want to give him a proper send off for everything he did for us before we were even born.”

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