Larry Kleiman gets a new smile.

(Time, YouTube)

Vietnam Vet Named 'Smiley' Gets New Teeth After Living Toothless For 40 Years

The Air Force sergeant was gifted a $60,000 new smile.

March 29, 2018 - 2:40 pm

When Larry Kleiman returned from his second tour in the Vietnam War, he went to work as a corrections officer. He says the inmates started calling him "Smiley" for his distinct grin – even though he had lost his teeth 40 years ago due to a calcium deficiency. 

But thanks to Dr. Michael Tischler and his team, the Air Force sergeant was gifted a $60,000 new smile.

Dr. Tischler founded Teeth Tomorrow, a company that provides implant bridges to patients across the country – and enjoys doing the procedure for free in some cases. 

“Here’s a man who gave service to our country,” Tischler told Time. “How do you say enough to vets that have given their lives for us, for our freedom? So it feels really good for all of us to be able to do this for him.” 

When Kleiman walked out of the New York doctor's office, he was greeted by friends, family and some local first responders.