ROME (AP) – On Thursday, the U.S. Army on Thursday with “Happy Birthday” in Italian and English roasted an Italian woman with a birthday cake to replace the one eaten by American soldiers when they entered her hometown during one of the last battles of the Second world war.
Mary Mion, who turns 90 on Friday, wiped away tears when she was presented with a cake during a ceremony in Vicenza, northwest of Venice. The event marked the anniversary of the 88th Infantry Division’s breakthrough into the city on April 28, 1945.
According to the U.S. Army, Mion spent the night with his mother, hiding in the attic of their farm in the nearby village of San Pietro in Gu. Retreating German soldiers fired on the house, but when Mion woke up on the morning of his 13th birthday, American soldiers were nearby.
A statement from the U.S. Army garrison in Italy said Mion’s mother baked her a holiday cake and left it on the windowsill to cool. But she disappeared – apparently cut by hungry American soldiers, whom grateful Italians had already treated to wine and bread when they entered Vicenza on its main highway.
Mion seemed genuinely surprised that American soldiers returned the cake 77 years later. She was surprised by “Mama mia” and “Grazie” when a small crowd of US commanders and Italian officials sang “Happy Birthday”.
“Tomorrow we will eat this dessert, and my whole family will remember this wonderful day that I will never forget,” said Mion, according to the U.S. Army.
Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed without permission.