Max Stern, former soldier and teacher, celebrated a century of life at the new Catholic Charities senior center in Howard Beach.
Stern, a 45-year resident of Howard Beach, was born on November 20, 1913. He graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in East New York and is one of six children. His only living sibling is his 92-year-old sister.
The centenarian worked at the Brooklyn Navy Yard before being drafted in 1942 to the 100th Division. While serving abroad in France, his 40-man unit was attacked by 63 German soldiers, and half his division was killed. Stern and the surviving half were captured by the Germans.
After the war, Stern returned to Brooklyn and received citations for his bravery. He then went to college and became a teacher and taught industrial arts for nearly two decades.
In 1968, he and his late wife moved to Howard Beach. Ten years ago, Stern became an active member at Catholic Charities, where he is still active today. He enjoys dancing, exercising and health management. He also participates in the center’s talent show and occasionally helps serve lunch.
Nearly 100 people celebrated Stern’s 100th birthday, including family, other senior center members, various clergy members and local elected officials.
Stern addressed the crowd and said that three naps a day has kept him healthy all these years.
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