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"Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

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"Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

Old 03-10-14, 02:05 AM
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"Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

Wishbone has the CNN story I posted below, so I'll update my original post with some video and a story from the Philadelphia newspaper. Video is in spoiler tags to keep it from playing automatically.
Spoiler:

<iframe width="590" height="332" src="http://launch.newsinc.com/?type=VideoPlayer/Single&widgetId=1&trackingGroup=69016&siteSection=philly2se&videoId=25697846" frameborder="no" scrolling="no" noresize marginwidth="0" marginheight="0"></iframe>


William Guarnere, one of the 'Band of Brothers'

Marie McCullough, Inquirer Staff Writer
Last updated: Monday, March 10, 2014, 1:08 AM

William "Wild Bill" Guarnere of South Philadelphia, a member of the famed 101st Airborne Division whose World War II exploits were portrayed in the TV mini-series Band of Brothers, died Saturday, March 8, at Jefferson University Hospital of a ruptured aortic aneurysm. He was a month shy of 91.

Mr. Guarnere was taken to the hospital from his home of 70 years in South Philadelphia, son Gene Guarnere of Broomall said.

Mr. Guarnere didn't talk about the war when his two sons were growing up, even though he organized Army reunions beginning in 1947 - and even though he lost his right leg while helping a wounded comrade.

"He never said a word," his son said. "I served in Vietnam in 1967. When I came home, I asked my father what he did in the war. He said, 'The war is over, kid. Forget about it.' "

Forgetting was not an option after writer Stephen Ambrose immortalized the members of Easy Company, 506th Regiment, 101st Airborne Division in his best-selling book, later made into the HBO mini-series. The chronicles followed the soldiers from their training in Georgia in 1942 through the harrowing battles they fought across Europe until the war ended in 1945.

As Mr. Guarnere told The Inquirer in 2010, D-Day was not only terrifying but vengeful. He learned of his brother Henry's death at the hands of the Germans in Italy just before parachuting directly into a firefight in Normandy, France.

"I couldn't wait to get off the plane," Mr. Guarnere recalled. "I killed every German I could. That's why they called me 'Wild Bill.' I landed in the middle of a square and they [Germans] were shooting at us. They were kind of scared; we were scared, too."

Among Mr. Guarnere's buddies in the unit was fellow South Philadelphian Edward "Babe" Heffron. They remained friends until Mr. Heffron died in December.

Mr. Guarnere and Mr. Heffron were instrumental in getting a monument erected in Normandy to honor the leadership of their unit, particularly their former commander, Richard Winters.

"I was mesmerized by the story, not only of my father but of the whole company," Gene Guarnere said.

Mr. Guarnere remained dedicated to his band of brothers, running their reunions until 2003.

Jake Powers, who runs a Band of Brothers tour company in Grafton, Mass., said Mr. Guarnere's defining trait was selflessness.

"He was my oldest daughter's godfather," Powers said. "He had a heart of gold. He'd rather give than take."

In addition to his son, Mr. Guarnere is survived by another son, William Jr.; nine grandchildren; and 14 great-grandchildren.

Friends may call from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, March 13, and from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. Friday, March 14, at the Ruffenach Funeral Home, 2101 S. 21st St., Philadelphia. The funeral will be at 10 a.m. Friday at St. Edmond's Church, 2130 S. 21st St.

Last edited by dex14; 03-10-14 at 04:20 PM. Reason: spoilered the automatic playing video
Old 03-10-14, 02:44 AM
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Re: "Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

So few left.
Old 03-10-14, 04:31 AM
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Re: "Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

Among his medals, he was awarded The Silver Star for gallantry in action, two Bronze Stars for heroic service, and three Purple Hearts.
Old 03-10-14, 09:01 AM
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Re: Lynn 'Buck' Compton of 'Band of Brothers' fame has died

'Band of Brothers' veteran William Guarnere dies
By Elizabeth Landers, CNN
updated 8:15 PM EDT, Sun March 9, 2014



(CNN) -- William Guarnere, a World War II veteran popularized by the "Band of Brothers" miniseries, has died. He was 90.

Guarnere was rushed to a hospital early Saturday morning and died of a ruptured aneurism that night, his son, William Guarnere Jr., told CNN.

"He lived a good life. He traveled a lot. He pretty much did everything he could have done," the son said Sunday.

During the war, Guarnere earned the nickname "Wild Bill." He lost a leg trying to save a friend on the battlefield.

The HBO miniseries was based on a book by Stephen E. Ambrose.

It told the story of Easy Company, 506th Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division, U.S. Army. Guarnere was played by actor Frank John Hughes.

The family is planning a funeral this week in Philadelphia, where Guarnere was born and lived most of his life, his son said.
http://www.cnn.com/2014/03/09/us/ban...ies/index.html





'Wild Bill' Guarnere
Old 03-10-14, 12:43 PM
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Re: "Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

Real heroes ever last one of them.
Old 03-10-14, 01:05 PM
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Re: Lynn 'Buck' Compton of 'Band of Brothers' fame has died

Originally Posted by Mr. Salty View Post
You might want to add this to my Guarnere obit thread.
Sorry, I did not see it in my search earlier. Thanks!
Old 03-10-14, 02:14 PM
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Re: "Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

reading his wiki page, Winters referred to him (as well as Capt Spiers) as the best "natural killers" he had ever seen. He really hated the krauts for killing his brother in Italy.
Old 03-10-14, 04:14 PM
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Re: "Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

RIP Wild Bill.
Old 03-10-14, 09:17 PM
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Re: "Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

Originally Posted by Bill Needle View Post
So few left.
I think he was the last one that figured prominently in the mini-series
Old 03-10-14, 09:22 PM
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Re: "Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

Originally Posted by JimRochester View Post
I think he was the last one that figured prominently in the mini-series
Malarkey
Old 03-10-14, 09:25 PM
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Re: "Band of Brothers" veteran Bill Guarnere dies

I looked it up last time someone from the series died and remembered they were getting down there.

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