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President Obama meets with country's oldest living veteran

By Marilyn Malara
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President Obama meets with country's oldest living veteran
President Barack Obama meets with 110-year-old Emma Didlake, who is believed to be the oldest living U.S. veteran, in the Oval Office of the White House on Friday, July 17, 2015 in Washington, DC. A resident of Detroit, Michigan, Didlake was a private in the Woman's Army Auxiliary Corps during World War II. Photo by Olivier Douliery/UPI | License Photo

WASHINGTON, July 18 (UPI) -- President Barack Obama spent a few minutes with 110-year-old Emma Didlake in the Oval Office Friday, to publicly praise her for her military service.

Didlake is said to be the oldest living veteran in the country. Born in Boligee, Ala. in 1905, she joined the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps in 1943 when she was 38 years old.

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"We are so grateful that she is here with us today," Obama said from beside Didlake. "It's a great reminder of not only the sacrifices that the greatest generation made on our behalf, but also the kind of trailblazing that our women veterans made, African American veterans who helped to integrate our Armed services."

"We are very, very proud of them, so that's why we've got to make sure we do right by them," he said.

The elderly veteran sat quietly next to the president as he continued to express admiration for her. She wore a blue suit, red sneakers and an American flag-printed scarf.

Detroit Free Press reports that Didlake's trip to the nation's Capitol was sponsored by Talons Out Honor Flight, a branch of a national network that organizes free airline flights for veterans so they can visit the memorials of the wars they fought in.

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Didlake was accompanied by several members of Talons Out Honor Flight on her D.C. excursions to the WWII memorial, the Franklin D. Roosevelt memorial and the Women in Military Service museum.

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