Twin WWII Veterans Celebrate 100th Birthday Together

Sep 6, 2018, 6:28 PM | Updated: 7:02 pm

POCATELLO, IDAHO – Ralph and Boyd Henderson went into the army together during World War II, but the war eventually separated them. Now, they’re celebrating their 100th birthday together with family and friends.

One hundred is a big number, and a pretty big deal, unless you’re the one who’s managed to reach that age.

“It means you’re old,” Ralph Henderson said, his family laughing in the background.

His twin brother, Boyd Henderson, had a different take.

“It’s wonderful,” Boyd said. “I had a feeling we’d do it.”

While Boyd lives in Pocatello, and Ralph in Provo, the two got together at a church in Pocatello Thursday to celebrate their big birthday. They’ve been through a lot together, including their service during World War II.

“Ralph went into the army before me,” Boyd said. “My mother was concerned, so she got me to join.”

The two brothers both left their young wives behind, training together, but were later separated into different companies of the 805th Tank Destroyer Battalion. Both admit that their time on the battlefield was hard.

“Sometimes you had to shoot,” Ralph said. “Shoot all the time. Didn’t like it.”

“I know Ralph was worried about me and I worried about him,” Boyd added. “I was on several invasions.”

Boyd was injured in combat, earning him the Purple Heart. Ralph earned a Silver Star award for his efforts during an invasion. The two were later reunited when Ralph says another soldier called him by the wrong name.

“A fella’ called me Boyd, and I don’t know why he called me Boyd, but I wasn’t Boyd,” Ralph said, adding that he later found his brother in a nearby tent.

Many years later, both of them were grateful for their experiences during the war, even though many of them were difficult.

“We belong to the greatest organization on earth,” Boyd said. “The United States Army. Ain’t nothing better, nothing bigger.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Three men are facing federal charges for allegedly robbing a postal carrier at gunpoint and taking ...
Brooke Williams

Man arrested after lengthy search, one still wanted

A 22-year-old man was arrested early Sunday after fleeing from a traffic stop.
15 hours ago
A West Valley police car. (Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)...
Brooke Williams

Two dead after crashing into parked truck

Two died in a crash in West Valley.
15 hours ago
Keith Jensen's Christmas home lit up by all the festive lights. (KSL-TV)...
Michael Locklear

Millcreek man lights up neighborhood with the face of Santa

Millcreek man is spreading Christmas cheer through tens of thousands of lights all around his home.
2 days ago
FILE PHOTO: The Chickadee lift is pictured at Snowbird in Little Cottonwood Canyon on Thursday, Oct...
Michael Houck and Brooke Williams

Avalanche triggered at Snowbird resort, no injuries reported

Rescue crews responded to the Snowbird Ski Resort after an avalanche was triggered on a trail. 
2 days ago
FILE PHOTO (Lehi Police Department/Facebook)...
Michael Houck

Lehi building placed on ‘lock down’ after reports of man with a gun

A misunderstanding caused a building to be placed in "lock down" after reports of a man with a gun Tuesday.
2 days ago
Pat Reavy, KSL.com

Price man arrested in woman’s 2019 death now being called a murder

A Price man has been arrested for investigation of murder in connection with the shooting death of a woman in 2019 in Carbon County that was once considered an accidental shooting.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Twin WWII Veterans Celebrate 100th Birthday Together