CHICAGO (CBS) — A World War II veteran from Arlington Heights has been inundated this week with birthday cards — and that’s just the beginning of his 90th birthday celebration.

George Hathaway says this birthday already has been his best ever. Not only has he passed his annual driver’s test; the confessed chocoholic has heard from the CEOs of Wendy’s and Hershey’s.

Hershey’s sent a hat, an umbrella and a shirt.

Hathaway intends to buy a lot of Frosties with the $90 gift card sent by Wendy’s.

Then there’s the stack of cards. More than 135 arrived on his birthday, Wednesday. Another 40 arrived Thursday, and more are expected to arrive over the next few days — both store-bought and hand-crafted.

His extended family also plans an “official” party on June 3.

The celebration was the idea of his daughter Mary, who put the word out quietly to friends using social media. They have responded in a variety of ways, one even sending a rosary blessed by Pope Francis.

The friendly retired “Culligan Man” and his wife of 67 years, Delores, still live at home.

Hathaway says he joined the Navy to “see the world,” and saw the Pacific from San Francisco to Guam while in the Navy, much of it aboard the USS Saratoga.

The couple took a trip to the Grand Canyon two years ago, but he says long-distance travel has become their only concession to age. It’s now “in the rear view mirror.”

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