29 Jun '13, 4pm

For homeless vet, peace, and a headstone, at last

For homeless vet, peace, and a headstone, at last

LAKE CHARLES, LA. — For 14 years, veteran Joseph Olczak’s remains lay in an unmarked grave. But thanks to the work of several people, Olczak’s plot at Consolata Cemetery finally has a military headstone. Olczak, a homeless World War II veteran, was 85 when he died under the Kayouchee Coulee bridge near Pine Shadows Golf Course in 1999. Olczak’s simple life touched several people. After David Grove met Olczak during the 1997 ice storm, he began bringing the elderly man meals twice a day. Olczak’s friends said he had lived under the bridge for about 10 years. When Olczak was 34, he lost a wife and child during childbirth and never remarried, they said. After World War II, he worked as a wrestler, a coal miner in Pennsylvania, a shrimper and fisherman, on the railroad and in a movie theater, they said. He reportedly spoke 11 languages. Olczak’s friends offered him clothes and...

Full article: http://www.militarytimes.com/article/20130629/NEWS/306290011

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