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These States Have the Most Living WWII Veterans

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Involving over 50 nations and spanning three continents, World War II emerged as one of the most important and pivotal conflicts in history. The United States entered the war in December 1941, two years after its commencement in Europe, committing all available resources. America’s contribution to defeating the Axis powers extended beyond massive industrial weapons and material production to include manpower. (these are the 18 biggest battles of World War II.)

Called the “arsenal of democracy,” the U.S. produced over 86,000 tanks, 96,000 bombers, 6.5 million rifles, 2.4 million trucks, and billions of dollars of supplies. America also mobilized more troops than any other Allied power except the Soviet Union. In the war’s final year, active-duty American military personnel surged to 12.2 million from under 500,000 in 1940.

Of the 16.3 million Americans who are estimated to have served in WWII, more than 400,000 were killed in action. As of the time of this writing, only 167,284 American veterans who returned home are still alive as of the end of  last year, according to The National WWII Museum. 

Using data from The National WWII Museum, 24/7 Wall St. identified the states that are home to the most surviving veterans of WWII. Each state is home to some veterans of the war, though depending on the state, the number ranges from fewer than 100 to well over 10,000. 

Nearly 80 years have passed since the war’s end, and currently, an average of 180 veterans of the conflict die each day in the United States. Over the next year, the number of WWII veterans is expected to fall by roughly half, and by 2034, a little more than 1,000 are likely to still be alive, according to projections from The National WWII Museum. (Here is a look at the states that sent the most troops to fight in World War II.)

As time goes on, Americans who fought in WWII will comprise an increasingly small share of the U.S. veteran population. According to the Census Bureau’s 2021 American Community Survey, there are 16.5 million American veterans, and only about 1% of them served in WWII. Across the 50 states, that share ranges from 0.2% to 2.1%. (Here are some of the best cities for veterans.)

Click here to see states with the most living WWII veterans.

50. Alaska
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 99 (0.2% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 58,431 – 7th fewest (11.0% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 732,673 (3rd smallest)

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49. Vermont
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 133 (0.4% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 31,971 – the fewest (6.1% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 645,570 (2nd smallest)

48. Wyoming
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 136 (0.3% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 40,910 – 3rd fewest (9.2% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 578,803 (the smallest)

47. North Dakota
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 307 (0.8% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 40,250 – 2nd fewest (6.9% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 774,948 (4th smallest)

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46. South Dakota
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 463 (0.9% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 54,403 – 5th fewest (8.1% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 895,376 (5th smallest)

45. Delaware
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 648 (1.2% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 55,516 – 6th fewest (7.0% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 1,003,384 (6th smallest)

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44. Hawaii
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 672 (0.8% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 87,357 – 9th fewest (8.0% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 1,441,553 (11th smallest)

43. Montana
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 758 (0.9% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 80,953 – 8th fewest (9.4% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 1,104,271 (8th smallest)

42. Idaho
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 788 (0.6% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 122,331 – 15th fewest (8.6% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 1,900,923 (13th smallest)

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41. New Hampshire
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,004 (1.1% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 87,604 – 10th fewest (7.8% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 1,388,992 (10th smallest)

40. West Virginia
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,021 (1.0% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 107,271 – 12th fewest (7.6% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 1,782,959 (12th smallest)

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39. Rhode Island
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,033 (2.1% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 49,206 – 4th fewest (5.6% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 1,095,610 (7th smallest)

38. Nebraska
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,086 (1.0% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 109,225 – 13th fewest (7.4% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 1,963,692 (14th smallest)

37. New Mexico
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,131 (0.9% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 128,924 – 16th fewest (7.9% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 2,115,877 (15th smallest)

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36. Arkansas
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,144 (0.6% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 177,176 – 21st fewest (7.7% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 3,025,891 (18th smallest)

35. Maine
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,181 (1.2% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 98,703 – 11th fewest (8.8% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 1,372,247 (9th smallest)

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34. Utah
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,230 (1.1% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 114,803 – 14th fewest (4.8% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 3,337,975 (21st smallest)

33. Mississippi
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,259 (0.8% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 155,272 – 19th fewest (6.9% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 2,949,965 (17th smallest)

32. Alabama
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,576 (0.5% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 315,142 – 20th most (8.1% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 5,039,877 (24th largest)

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31. Kansas
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,596 (1.1% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 147,721 – 18th fewest (6.7% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 2,934,582 (16th smallest)

30. Louisiana
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,600 (0.7% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 221,316 – 23rd fewest (6.3% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 4,624,047 (25th largest)

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29. Iowa
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,767 (1.1% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 162,358 – 20th fewest (6.6% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 3,193,079 (20th smallest)

28. Nevada
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 1,791 (0.9% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 193,340 – 22nd fewest (7.9% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 3,143,991 (19th smallest)

27. South Carolina
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 2,142 (0.6% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 353,056 – 16th most (8.7% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 5,190,705 (23rd largest)

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26. Oklahoma
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 2,301 (1.0% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 240,146 – 25th most (8.0% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 3,986,639 (23rd smallest)

25. Tennessee
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 2,372 (0.6% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 394,604 – 14th most (7.3% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 6,975,218 (16th largest)

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24. Kentucky
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 2,478 (1.0% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 237,597 – 24th fewest (6.8% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 4,509,394 (25th smallest)

23. Colorado
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 2,699 (0.8% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 348,485 – 17th most (7.7% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 5,812,069 (21st largest)

22. Oregon
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 2,769 (1.1% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 259,207 – 24th most (7.7% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 4,246,155 (24th smallest)

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21. Connecticut
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 2,810 (2.0% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 140,684 – 17th fewest (4.9% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 3,605,597 (22nd smallest)

20. Maryland
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 2,876 (0.9% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 332,591 – 19th most (7.0% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 6,165,129 (19th largest)

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19. Georgia
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 3,299 (0.6% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 595,743 – 9th most (7.3% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 10,799,566 (8th largest)

18. Missouri
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 3,406 (1.0% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 355,424 – 15th most (7.5% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 6,168,187 (18th largest)

17. Wisconsin
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 3,700 (1.2% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 303,641 – 21st most (6.6% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 5,895,908 (20th largest)

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16. Minnesota
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 3,845 (1.4% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 265,920 – 23rd most (6.1% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 5,707,390 (22nd largest)

15. Virginia
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 3,914 (0.6% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 641,144 – 5th most (9.7% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 8,642,274 (12th largest)

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14. Arizona
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 3,986 (0.9% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 454,375 – 13th most (8.1% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 7,276,316 (14th largest)

13. Washington
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 4,176 (0.9% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 490,717 – 11th most (8.2% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 7,738,692 (13th largest)

12. Indiana
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 4,583 (1.4% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 335,248 – 18th most (6.4% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 6,805,985 (17th largest)

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11. New Jersey
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 4,712 (1.7% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 283,485 – 22nd most (3.9% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 9,267,130 (11th largest)

10. Massachusetts
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 5,006 (2.1% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 238,039 – 25th fewest (4.2% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 6,984,723 (15th largest)

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9. North Carolina
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 5,061 (0.8% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 615,452 – 7th most (7.6% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 10,551,162 (9th largest)

8. Michigan
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 5,989 (1.3% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 474,645 – 12th most (6.0% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 10,050,811 (10th largest)

7. Illinois
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 6,114 (1.2% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 496,352 – 10th most (5.0% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 12,671,469 (6th largest)

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6. Ohio
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 6,919 (1.1% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 621,890 – 6th most (6.8% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 11,780,017 (7th largest)

5. Texas
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 8,200 (0.6% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 1,408,464 – the most (6.4% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 29,527,941 (2nd largest)

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4. New York
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 9,635 (1.6% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 614,289 – 8th most (3.9% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 19,835,913 (4th largest)

3. Pennsylvania
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 9,675 (1.5% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 641,525 – 4th most (6.2% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 12,964,056 (5th largest)

2. Florida
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 14,823 (1.1% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 1,356,882 – 2nd most (7.8% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 21,781,128 (3rd largest)

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1. California
> Living WWII veterans, 2022: 15,946 (1.2% of all living veterans)
> Total veteran population: 1,342,337 – 3rd most (4.4% of civilians 18 and older)
> Total population: 39,237,836 (the largest)

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