Editor's note: The video above is from May 2019 when Painter was asking for the cards.
A World War II veteran who reportedly received thousands of cards from around the world for his 100th birthday, after his retirement home asked for 100, has died.
The Mayflower Retirement Home in Lexington, Virginia, made the announcement Sunday in a Facebook post.
"With great sadness and a heavy heart today We lost a hero Ray Painter. (As) I think back on the memories of Ray I almost have to chuckle. He was a comedian. (As) we celebrated his 100th birthday with the world, he loved every minute of it. He often said I’m famous. Ray you will forever hold a place in so many hearts Fly high."
Painter turned 100 on May 5.
“I never thought I’d turn 100,” said Painter before the milestone. “After retiring [from DuPont] I thought I’d live till 70, maybe 75.”
Beloved by all, The Mayflower’s staff wanted to do something extra special for Painter’s birthday.
Painter has always loved receiving mail, especially cards. So, the staff came up with the idea of asking others to write Painter a birthday card. They took to Facebook, asking for 100 cards for his 100th birthday. He ended up with 174 before May even rolled around, then asked for more.
WSLS reported that Painter ended up with more than 7,500 cards from all 50 states and from countries around the world including England, France, Germany and Australia.