Ussery Roan Texas State Veterans Home Celebrates Veteran’s 102nd Birthday

Leslie Linger Center

On Friday, July 6, family and friends of Leslie Linger gathered at the Ussery Roan Texas State Veterans Home in Amarillo to celebrate Mr. Linger’s 102nd birthday. A reception was held in the afternoon with many special guests in attendance to honor Mr. Linger.

Born on July 6, 1916, in Vega, Texas, Linger was the second oldest in a family of six. He grew up farming with his family before he answered the call of duty. After joining the U.S. Army Linger was inducted into the U.S. Army Air Corps on September 17, 1940, in Lubbock. As a member of the Greatest Generation, Linger served at Lemoore Air Army Field in California, rising to the rank of Tech Sergeant. He was honorably discharged on January 5, 1945.

Linger returned to the farming life after the war. It wouldn’t be long before he was enlisted into public service as the Oldham County Clerk from 1953 to 1956. Nearly two decades later, Linger would return to politics serving terms as Mayor of Vega from 1983 to 1985 and as a Vega City Councilman from 1988 to 1990.

According to his son, Joe, Mr. Linger’s most important position was as a Scout Master for 14 years.

“Many young men have said that being a Scout under Mr. Linger made a positive difference in their lives,” Joe Linger said.

On July 6, Mr. Linger’s life and career were honored once again with a birthday celebration at the Ussery Roan Texas State Veterans Home. Mr. Howard Smith, Amarillo City Commissioner, presented Mr. Linger with a City Proclamation declaring July 6 as “Leslie Linger Day.”

(L-R) Melissa Kalka | Howard Smith

Two women from the musical drama “Texas” performed a rousing rendition of Happy Birthday for Mr. Linger.

Melissa Kalka, Veterans Services Representative for U.S. Representative Mac Thornberry, presented Mr. Linger with a letter and resolution from Representative Thornberry.

Mr. Linger also received a signed proclamation from Texas Land Commissioner and VLB Chairman George P. Bush with special birthday greetings, and a signed proclamation and Texas Flag from Texas State Representative Four Price.

For additional information on VLB Texas State Veterans Homes and Cemeteries, and land, home and home improvement loans, call 1–800–252-VETS (8387), or visit Follow the Texas Veterans Land Board on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. Read more blogs at and listen to The Dog Tag at