7-year-old Pennsylvania girl surprises 100-year-old 'best friend' on his birthday

ByMaggie Kent KTRK logo
Saturday, December 30, 2023
7-year-old girl surprises 100-year-old 'best friend' on his birthday
7-year-old girl surprises 100-year-old 'best friend' on his birthday

NEWTOWN TWP., Pennsylvania -- A Bucks County, Pennsylvania man celebrated his 100th birthday in style on Friday, and it was his 7-year-old best friend who pulled out all the stops to make his day memorable.

Layla Leuthy Peck pulled up to Joe Gagliardi's house in epic fashion, riding on a Newtown Township Fire truck. She arrived as the sirens and horns were blaring for a party like no other.

Gagliardi is celebrating a very special milestone birthday.

"We're both the same age," joked Gagliardi.

Give or take 93 years.

"How long have you guys been friends?" we asked.

"Since I was a baby," replied Layla.

On this centenarian celebration, the World War II veteran received a flag flown in his honor over the capital building in Washington D.C.

The Newtown Fire and Police departments came out in waves to shake his hand and wish him well. That includes Layla's dad Sean Peck, a Penndel policeman himself.

"I grew up two houses down. I always listened to Joe's stories as a veteran and that encouraged me to join the Army," said Peck.

The showstopper: Layla brought 100 handmade cards from her friends at St. Andrew's Catholic School in Newtown.

"I thought, 'Since he's turning 100 maybe we should make him 100 cards, 'cause he's a good person!' We made 100 cards, the whole first grade did," said Layla.

Joe is a living example of service and sacrifice and now Layla is picking that up.