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Johnnie Wright walked to Charlotte from his family’s Lancaster farm in August 1940 to join the Army. He was 19 years old, had one dime in his pocket and two buddies with not a cent in theirs.
The 5-foot-10 Wright weighed 137 pounds and was dressed in his Sunday suit, the only clothes he had that weren’t overalls.
“I spent my dime to buy pencils to fill out the papers,” he said. “So then all three of us were flat broke.”
The three men served during World War II. Two made it home alive.
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