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France Honors All Its WWI Veterans


France used the funeral of its last surviving World War I veteran Monday as an opportunity to honor all French soldiers who fought in the war.

Lazare Ponticelli died last week at his home outside Paris at age 110.

President Nicolas Sarkozy led the funeral Monday at the historic church at the Invalides in Paris, where the emperor Napoleon is buried.

Mr. Sarkozy said no one is left to tell their children and grandchildren about what French soldiers endured in World War I. He said France will never forget them.

Ponticelli was later buried in a family plot in a suburban Paris cemetery.

Ponticelli was 16 years old at the outbreak of war with Germany in 1914. He lied about his age so he could join the French Foreign Legion in 1914 and fight.

More than eight million French soldiers fought in World War I.

Only a handful of veterans from the war are still alive.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.

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