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Famous Shriners


Many famous faces have proudly worn the red fez of the Shriners fraternity. These Nobles include entertainers, heads of government, business leaders and sports legends. A few current Shriners you may have heard of are shown below:

Noble Frank Woodruff Buckles, the last American WWI Veteran and Shrine Mason

Noble Buckles, an Osiris Shriner, is pictured below with several members of the Divan including 2010 Illustrious Potentate Bob Taylor presenting his membership card for the year on his birthday, February 01, 2011. Noble Buckles passed away three weeks later, on February 27, 2011

The nation's last living World War I veteran has died. A family spokesman says 110-year old Frank Buckles died early Sunday of natural causes at his home in Charles Town, WV. Buckles was 16 when he lied about his age and enlisted in the U.S. Army and headed to Europe to fight in the Great War. He did not serve in combat, but spent his time as a driver and warehouse clerk in England and France. Buckles had celebrated his 110th birthday on February 1st.  He's become active with his notoriety as the last living American vet of the conflict and had pushed for a memorial in Washington to honor those who served in World War I.

CHARLES TOWN, W.VA - Frank Woodruff Buckles, renowned locally and across the nation as the last surviving American World War I veteran, passed away Sunday at the age of 110, family spokesman David DeJonge confirmed to The Journal late Sunday night. Buckles passed away of natural causes around 12:30 a.m. Details for services will be announced later this week, and DeJonge said there is a possibility that Buckles will lie in state, depending on government arrangements.

"We would just like to see the United States honor Mr. Buckles in the best way possible to demonstrate to the entire world true American patriotism," he said. Buckles enlisted on Aug. 14, 1917, when he was 16 years old, after fibbing about his age to an Army recruiter. He served two years overseas during WWI, in England and France. He worked as an ambulance driver, and after Armistice Day he was assigned to a prisoner-of-war escort company to help return prisoners back to Germany. Buckles returned to the United States in 1920 as a corporal.

Years later, he was captured as a prisoner of war at the beginning of World War II, when he was working as a civilian for a shipping company in the Philippines. He spent more than three years in Japanese prison camps in Santo Tomas and Los Banos, and this past Wednesday marked 66 years since Buckles' rescue. After recovering and returning to the U.S., he met and married his wife, Audrey, in California. They lived in San Francisco for a few years, before they bought Gap View Farm near Charles Town in January 1954 and had their daughter in 1955.

The veteran was recognized many times during his long life. One of his most significant awards came from former French President Jacques Chirac in 1999 at the French Embassy in Washington, when Buckles received the French Legion of Honor pin and spoke to Chirac in French. Buckles met with President George W. Bush and top Pentagon officials in March 2008, and he received the Distinguished West Virginian Award from then-Gov. Joe Manchin in August 2007. He is survived by his daughter, Susannah Buckles Flanagan, and her husband. His family asks that donations be made to the National World War One Legacy Project to honor Buckles and the 4,734,991 Americans that he served with during WWI. The project is managed by the nonprofit Survivor Quest and will educate students about Buckles and WWI through a documentary, a bronze statue and a traveling educational exhibition. Details can be found at www.frankbuckles.org.

Other Famous Shriners Through the Years
Warren Gamaliel Harding
29th President of the US

Franklin Delano Roosevelt

32nd President of the US

Harry S. Truman
33rd President of the US
Gerald Rudolph Ford, Jr.
38th President of the US
Hubert Horatio Humphrey, Jr.
38th Vice-President of the US
His Majesty David Kalākaua I
Last King - Kingdom of Hawai'i
Leroy Gordon "Gordo" Cooper, Jr.
Project Mercury Astronaut
Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom
Project Mercury Astronaut
Edwin Eugene "Buzz" Aldrin, Jr.
Astronaut - 2nd man on the Moon
Gwyllyn S. N. "Glenn" Ford
Actor and Military Veteran - WWII
Douglas Fairbanks
Award Winning Actor
Clark Gable
Award Winning Actor
Mel Blanc
Voices of "Bugs Bunny"
Ermes Effron "Ernest" Borgnine
Award Winning Actor
Chill Theodore Wills
Actor/Voice of "Francis the Mule"
Colonel Harland David Sanders
Founder - Kentucky Fried Chicken
General Douglas MacArthur
Military Leader during World War II
Earl Warren
Governor/Chief Justice of the US
Denton True "Cy" Young
Major League Baseball Player
Harold Clayton Lloyd
Silent Comedies Actor/Producer
Frank Stallone, Jr.
Singer/Sylvester Stallone's brother
Jack "Manassa Mauler" Dempsey
Boxer - Heavyweight Champion
Gen. James H. "Jimmy" Doolittle
Aviation Pioneer - WWII Veteran
John Edgar Hoover
Founder and Director of the FBI
John George Diefenbaker
13th Prime Minister of Canada
John Philip Sousa
Famous Composer and Conductor
John Wayne
Academy Award Winning Actor
Louis "Lou" Sekora
Member of Canadian Parliament
Dr. Norman Vincent Peale
Preacher and Author
Richard Bernard "Red" Skelton
Radio and Television Comedian
Roy Linwood Clark
Country Music Performer
Roy Rogers
Singer and Cowboy Actor
Luther A. Burbank
Horticulturist and Naturalist
Albert Hortman
"Editorial Without Words" Shriner
Richard Martin Tyson
John Strand
Northwest Passage Navigator
David Ragan
NASCAR Race Car Driver
Chris Dilbeck
 NASCAR S/T Race Car Driver
Sam Hornish, Jr.
NASCAR/Indy Race Car Driver

A detailed list of Famous Shriners can be found by clicking HERE


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