‘Band of Brothers’ inspiration Winters has died

‘Band of Brothers’ inspiration Winters dies at 92

Ron Todt
Associated Press
via Yahoo! News

Maj. Richard "Dick" Winters is seen in Sept. 22, 2002 file photo. Winters died Jan. 2, 2011 in central Pennsylvania, a family friend confirmed Monday, Jan. 10, 2011. Winters, was the man whose quiet leadership was chronicled in the book and television miniseries "Band of Brothers." He was 92. (AP Photo/Laura Rauch, File)

PHILADELPHIA – Dick Winters, the Easy Company commander whose World War II exploits were made famous by the book and television miniseries “Band of Brothers,” has died in central Pennsylvania. He was 92.

Winters died last week after a several-year battle with Parkinson’s disease, longtime family friend William Jackson said Monday.

An intensely private and humble man, Winters had asked that news of his death be withheld until after his funeral, Jackson said. Winters lived in Hershey, Pa., but died in suburban Palmyra.

The men Winters led expressed their admiration for their company commander after learning of his death. William Guarnere, 88, said what he remembers about Winters was “great leadership.”

“When he said ‘Let’s go,’ he was right in the front,” Guarnere, who was called “Wild Bill” by his comrades, said Sunday night from his south Philadelphia home. “He was never in the back. A leader personified.”

Another member of the unit living in Philadelphia, Edward Heffron, 87, said thinking about Winters brought a tear to his eye.

“He was one hell of a guy, one of the greatest soldiers I was ever under,” said Heffron, who had the nickname “Babe” in the company. “He was a wonderful officer, a wonderful leader. He had what you needed, guts and brains. He took care of his men, that’s very important.”

Winters was born Jan. 21, 1918, and studied economics at Franklin and Marshall College before enlisting, according to a biography on the Penn State website.

Winters became the leader of Company E, 506th Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, on D-Day after the death of the company commander during the invasion of Normandy…

The obituary continues at Yahoo! News.

H/T Michael Yon’s Facebook page.

CAJ note: Headline typo corrected 1/11/2011

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