Who was the 12-year-old “baby vet” who fought at Guadalcanal?

Calvin L. Graham (1930-92), born in Canton, Texas, was the boy who lied about his age so he could enlist in the U.S. Navy at age 12 during World War II.

Wounded by shrapnel during the Battle of Guadalcanal in 1942, he helped pull other crew members to safety.

When the Navy discovered his age the following year, they gave him a dishonorable discharge.

Touted in newspapers as the “baby vet,” Graham fought for years to get back his decorations and benefits and to win an honorable discharge retroactively.

He eventually succeeded.

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