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WWI vets give parade a golden touch

September 17, 1997

By RICHARD F. BELISLE

Staff Writer, Waynesboro

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Milton Garland, 102, and Clyde Kuhn, 98, Waynesboro's surviving World War One veterans, will take active and passive roles in Saturday's Bicentennial Parade.

Garland, the parade's official honoree, will be in the first car behind the police escort and National Guard honor guard.

Kuhn will watch the parade as it passes below his third-floor apartment window.

The decades have been kinder to Garland than they were to Kuhn.

Garland goes to his office in the engineering department at the Frick Co. every morning. His step is lively and his eyes are still smiling and bright, though he doesn't see as well as he used to, he said. He uses a magnifying device to read his correspondence and trade publications.

Kuhn stays home mostly. "I have my good days and my bad days, mostly bad," said the old Army vet who trained draftees for the fighting in Europe.

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Garland was born Aug. 23, 1895, in Harrisburg, Pa., during Grover Cleveland's second term as president. Kuhn was born Sept. 3, 1899, in what was then Funkstown, Pa., and now Mont Alto, Pa. Neither went overseas during the war.

Garland retired from Frick in 1967 at age 72 as vice president of technical services. He started with the company in 1920. He walked to work from the house on Second Street that he bought in 1926 and still lives in.

He catches a ride in to work now, he said.

After retiring, Garland stayed on at Frick as a private consultant for training and technical services. In 1988, he cut his hours back to mornings only.

Garland said his first "worthwhile" memory was the washout of a bridge over the Susquehanna River when he was still very young. "It could have been 1897 or 1898. I remember my father taking me to see it," he said.

His education was interrupted by service in the Navy from 1917 to 1919. He graduated with a mechanical engineering degree from Worcester Polytechnic Institute in 1920.

His knowledge of steam engines soon put him aboard a coastal freighter that hauled coal from Virginia to a Navy yard in Boston.

Garland remembers Waynesboro's 150th anniversary in 1947. He was a tour guide in Frick's engine room where giant, 70-year-old steam engines generated electrical power for the plant. "It was just about the end of the steam age," he said.

Garland said trolley cars were running to PenMar Park, Chambersburg, Pa., and to Hagerstown when he came to Waynesboro.

He has two children, ages 74 and 68. Both live in California.

Kuhn had a son, now deceased.

Garland attributes his longevity to staying active. Kuhn said he doesn't know why he has lived this long.

Kuhn worked as auto mechanic for 35 years then as a bartender in the local American Legion home before retiring for good 20 years ago, he said.

The three-hour parade begins at noon at East Junior High, heads west on Main Street to South Potomac then to Eighth Street, where it ends. It is said to be the crowning event in Waynesboro's two-month-long 200th anniversary celebration.

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