BRICK, New Jersey (CNN) — A World War II veteran in New Jersey is turning 102 this week.
Staffers at his retirement home sent out a request for 102 cards to mark the occasion.
They ended up with much, much more.
George Campbell may be more than a century old, but he doesn’t need glasses or extra light to read these birthday cards.
“Dear George. Have a wonderful birthday.”
“Happy 102 birthday.”
“More candles mean more wishes.”
Though what Campbell will need soon is a large place to display his cards, all 2,000 of them… and counting.
“I enjoy reading the cards, seeing what folks written on it,” he said.
On Thursday, Campbell will turn 102-years-old.
To celebrate the milestone, workers at his Brick retirement home, Willow Springs, posted on its Facebook page a picture of the Jersey-born man holding up a sign asking for 102 cards.
What came next, they never saw coming.
“Just thought it would be local, half the residents would make a card and we would do it,” said Yehuda May, Willow Springs’ nursing home administrator.
But days later, love and support from complete strangers came pouring in, all organized alphabetically by state.
Cards from 40 states, Germany and Ireland, it’s 20 times the amount they asked for.
Campbell’s daughter said it’s overwhelming.
“It’s just a wonderful wonderful experience,” said Tricia Campbell McAvoy.
Campbell spent four years in the Navy during World War II, a fact McAvoy appreciates is mentioned in most of the birthday cards.
The staff and family keeping the number of cards a surprise for Campbell, only giving him a few a day, until his birthday. That’s when they will daze him with a big douse of reading material that will probably last him until his next birthday.