CENTRE COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — A World War II Veteran marked a milestone Birthday on Sunday, Aug. 7 as a local American Legion Post gave him a special celebration he will never forget.

Lewis Liptak, who turned 100, served in WWII and fought during the Battle of the Bulge. He was awarded a purple heart and is now a member at the American Legion Post #437 in Philipsburg.

To celebrate the once in a lifetime occasion, fellow legionnaires at Post #437 organized a birthday event honoring the Veteran’s long life and service.

“It’s not often, if ever, you get the chance to even meet a WWII, Battle of the Bulge, Purple heart Veteran let alone get the privilege of presenting him with an award. We wanted to do so much to make his day special,” Post Commander Johna McCormick said.

Legion members along with family and friends gathered at an area hall where he was presented with awards that included a Grateful Appreciation Medal for service to God and Country and a Certificate of Honor in recognition and grateful appreciation for serving in the United States Armed Forces.

Liptak was also given a quilt from the Quilts of Valor Foundation and Post #437 paid for his continued membership. The celebration also had a drive by honk and wave parade where seven cars with family and friends rode by to show their support and appreciation.

“The family repeatedly expressed their appreciation towards the legion for doing all this, but as we told them all yesterday, the privilege and honor was all ours and we truly meant that!,” McCormick said.

Liptak’s family also told McCormick he didn’t want to leave his Birthday celebration saying he felt so loved.