95-year-old veteran golfs every day in Surprise

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SURPRISE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

A Valley veteran is turning heads at a local golf course.

He's 95 years old, and he hits the links every day.

We're talking about a man who made it through dozens of dangerous combat missions during World War II as the tail gunner of a plane

Ed Smith is so full of life.

At 95, his advice to us is simple.

"There are so many good things about life; you shouldn't talk about the bad things," said Smith.

These days, the driving range is where you'll find Smith, giving it his all.

One thing is for sure: Smith has a great sense of humor.

When we caught up with him at Coyote Lakes Golf Course, he cracked jokes even when his shots were a little off.

As Smith continued to warm up, his shots became consistent and right on target, and even he was surprised.

Smith was born in 1921, grew up on a farm in Iowa, was drafted to the Army-Air Force at 20. He served as the tail gunner of a B-25 Mitchell Medium Bomber, carrying out 50 combat missions during the Bombing of Rabaul in 1943.

"We lost 50 percent of our people, so getting to come home without a scratch, I don't know if you call it a feather in your hat or just good luck. I never got a scratch," said Smith.

After his service, Smith became a successful farmer, bought a hardware store, then moved to Arizona and became an air conditioning contractor.

After 37 years, Smith retired.

Now, every day, for the past year or so, Smith hits balls for a couple hours at Coyote Lakes in Surprise, where his swing is looking more and more like Arnold Palmer's, whether he admits it or not.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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