May 8, 1962 - Former President Harry S. Truman (pictured with Sir Winston Churchill in 1952) observed his 78th birthday in Kansas City, Mo., today. On hand to help him celebrate at a luncheon at the Hotel President were 250 old friends, former members of his Administration, and Vice President Johnson. Mr. Johnson, speaking at the luncheon, called Mr. Truman one of the great Presidents of the United States. “Certainly,” the Vice President said, “there are other people — students in West Berlin, farmers in the soaked rice paddies of South Korea and the dry mountainsides of Greece and Turkey, workers in France and Italy — who walk the earth in freedom today because you once led us.” Mr. Johnson praised Mr. Truman for the Point Four program, the G.I. Bill of Rights, and the conversion of the country’s wartime economy to peacetime stability. At a reception before the luncheon, the former President greeted dozens of well-wishers. He slapped old friends on the back, talked and joked with them, and introduced them to Mr. Johnson. Fifty-three foreign students, many in national costume, filed by and shook Mr. Truman’s hand.
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