BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — The number of veterans living in any community can be a difficult number to pin down. Sometimes we only learn of someone's service to this country after they have passed away.
Periodic surveys attempt to provide a rough estimate of those service members nationwide. The Census Bureau estimates that about half a million World War II veterans are still with us, but by the year 2030 that number will drop to about 8,000.
California has nearly 54,000 WWII vets with seven percent of the over 85 population having served in the 'war to end all wars.'
In a survey by Slacker posted on Wednesday, Kern County is ranked 37th in California with more than 31,000 veterans. That represents five percent of Kern's population.
The number of World War II servicemembers is now 1,001, with nearly 3,000 from Korea. Vietnam and the Gulf War represent the largest group with more than 27,000 vets.
There are more than 1.5 million veterans in California.