SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) — Celebrating a century and five years, the oldest Pearl Harbor survivor, Ray Chavez of Poway, was all smiles for his birthday party Saturday evening aboard the USS Midway.
"I feel very good every day, we don't live forever, so it doesn't bother me not one bit,” Chavez said.
He even shared his secret to living a long life:
"I don't drink alcohol, I don't smoke and I eat a well-balanced meal and keep regular hours."
Chavez served as Chief Quartermaster in the U.S. Navy during the attack on Dec. 7 1941.
"Heroes like him, from the Greatest Generation, they're like a library, and when that time goes it's like a library burning down," said Jack Scalia, an Emmy-nominated actor formerly of All My Children.
So many were honored just to meet the man of the hour.
"This is a moment in time for everybody that's here, and I don't know that we'll ever get an opportunity that will ever equal something like this, because let's face it, 105, you know nobody lives that long for the most part," said Joe Torrillo, Ret. Lt. NYFD.
Throughout the night, Chavez was showered with hugs and kisses. Then came the birthday song sung by Called To Serve’s Jeff Senour and the Satin Dollz.
Not stopping now, even with a milestone of a birthday, Chavez is thinking about the future.
"When I get to be 106, I'll know what happened," he said.
Instead of gifts, Chavez asked his guests to donate to his favorite charities- the Gary Sinise Foundation, the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes and Infinite Hero.