HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - Tuesday June 6, 2017, marks the 73rd anniversary of the D-Day Invasion of World War II. The local chapter of Forever Young Senior Veterans is honoring four local heroes who fought and survived the horrors of the historic invasion.
One of those heroes still has a full-time job and isn't exactly dreaming of retirement.
Five days a week, you can find Harold McMurran working hard on planes out at Moontown Airport.
“I take a 30 minute break in the morning,” says McMurran. "A 30-minute break in the afternoon, that’s it.”
He says emphatically, he has no intention of slowing down any time soon.
“Not until they bury me,” he jokes.
His love affair with planes started at age six. 88 years later, he's still just as giddy.
"Something gets in your blood, it’s like being a dope addict. It gets in your blood and you’ll get out of it and it’ll come right back sooner or later," says McMurran.
Despite his love for aviation, when the Army drafted him at age 18 for World War II, instead of putting a wrench in his hand, they gave him a rifle.
“According to my diary, we went into the beach at 7:15 in the morning," he remembers.
On D-Day, 1944, he and his rifle had a front row seat to history.
“First was afraid, then I was scared, and then I didn’t care, you just pushed on," says McMurran.
Storming the beaches of Normandy, Harold saw horrors many of us may never understand.
“You learned real quick, that where there was a body, walk there because machine gunners had already covered that space and was going to move over," he says.
He says, never once, did he question the importance of what they were doing.
"There was one thing instilled in us, we knew we had to do it. There was no question. It was either do it, or serve under someone like Hitler for the rest of our life," says McMurran, with tears in his eyes.
D-Day on Display Event
Harold is one of four D-Day survivors who will be speaking to a crowd Tuesday, June 6th, from 5-7 pm at Dynetics in Huntsville.
It's called D-Day on Display and is being hosted by Forever Young Senior Veterans.
There will be four D-Day survivors there for people to meet, sign autographs and answer questions.
Admission at the door is either a donation or you can pre-register on Forever Young Senior Veterans' website.
First and foremost, the event is to honor the brave survivors and hear their stories, but Forever Young Senior Veterans is also hoping to raise money so they can continue to honor and grant wishes for veterans over the age of 65.
While Harold has no intentions of slowing down, in a matter of a few years, this generation won't be around to tell their tales.
“I don’t care how good of leadership you have, things happen you can’t control. That’s war," says McMurran.
What an incredible story he has to tell. Whether it's from the battlefield, or the thousands of planes he's nursed back to health.
“They bring a sick airplane in here and I get it flying again - I’m proud of that," he says.