Lifestyle & Human Interest

Dancing 97-Year-Old WWII Veteran Is Warming Hearts Across America


Chuck Franzke was a Navy pilot in World War II. He lives in Waukesha, Wisconsin, with his wife Beverly, and the two love to dance.

“I like to dance but my balance stinks,” he told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in 2017. “I’m lucky I can stand up here without falling over, but I’m just an average guy. I’ve been married to a wonderful woman for 79 years.”

Franzke loves his wife, his country, and music. He’s been in the public eye several times for his dance moves, but it’s something that’s been a part of him for most of his impressive 97 years.

“We were big band fans,” he told WDJT-TV in 2018 after one of his dance videos went viral. “I used to jitterbug when I was young.”

“I can’t jitterbug today,” he explained. “My balance isn’t good. But I just like music and I like her too.”

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“He always was a pretty good dancer,” Beverly agreed.

He said people have started recognizing him when he goes out, but not everyone who’s seen his videos has had something positive to say.

“One day I saw one dislike,” he said, referring to a video online of his dancing. “I wondered ‘What in the heck did I do that somebody didn’t like?’ And I’d like to know who it was.”

On the whole, though, viewers have been cheered by the elderly gentleman’s moves. A recent update video shows that not only is Franzke still alive and kickin’, but he’s also as patriotic and lively as ever.

The video shows the veteran as he runs through his signature moves: First, he cups his hand around his ear, listening to the music; next, he walks out onto his front porch and starts moving; and finally, he ends by saluting the flag that’s poised nearby.

This time it’s not Jingle Bells that he’s dancing to, though — it’s “Can’t Stop the Feeling” by Justin Timberlake.

When the video was posted and shared online, the artist saw the clip.

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“This just made my day,” Timberlake posted in response to the video, according to People.

While it’s Franzke’s dance moves that get him recognized, he is always sure to work his wife into the conversation.

It’s clear that the couple has a deep affection for one another, and the only thing more heartwarming than Franzke’s dancing is his love for his bride.

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