Local veteran honored by French government for his service during World War II

World War II veteran James “Jim” Gloekler is seen Monday, Aug. 13, 2018, in Bakersfield, Calif. Gloekler was honored with the prestigious French Legion of Honor medal for his service in World War II. (KBAK/KBFX photo)

Local veteran James “Jim” Gloekler served his country well during World War II, taking part in the invasion of Normandy, the Battle of the Bulge, and D-Day, just to name a few.

On Monday, some 70 years after the war ended, the 90-year-old Gloekler received a very special honor – the prestigious French Legion of Honor medal.

Gloekler served as squad leader and company scout during his time in the European arena. The fact that he spoke German gave him an advantage, especially during scouting missions.

A representative of the French government presented Gloekler with the medal, calling him “the perfect soldier.”

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