'Band of Brothers' Vet William Guarnere Dead at 90

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By Sami K. Martin , Christian Post Reporter
March 10, 2014|10:21 am

One of the real-life veterans portrayed on HBO's hit series "Band of Brothers" has died at the age of 90. William "Wild Bill" Guarnere, passed away at Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia after suffering a ruptured aneurysm.

Guarnere's character was played by Frank John Hughes in the mini-series that portrayed life in World War II and followed the members of Easy Company all the way from their training in Georgia until the end of the war. Guarnere was known for his performance and "wild" ways during combat, which is how he ended up with the nickname.

Band of Brothers (Photo: Facebook/Band of Brothers)

The Band of Brothers DVD set.

During service, he lost a leg while trying to help a wounded soldier at the Battle of the Bulge. He recovered from his wounds and went on to try and help other wounded veterans in the service. In 2007, he helped write the memoir "Brothers in Battle, Best of Friends" with his fellow serviceman Edward J. "Babe" Heffron and journalist Robyn Post.

The book detailed the men's experiences in the service as well as their friendship afterwards. According to the book, Heffron and Guarnere remained extremely close after the war ended and called each other nearly every day just to check in. The two men never thought of themselves as heroes but men with "a job to do."

"He felt the heroes were the moms who sent their kids off and the guys who never came back. Babe didn't consider himself a hero, just a guy who did his job," Heffron's son-in-law told Fox News after he died in December 2013.

Guarnere felt the exact same way and worked tirelessly to ensure that his comrades received the commendations and recognition they deserved for their service.

"He did more things behind the scenes for other veterans than (for) himself," Jake Powers, a friend, told the Associated Press.

"Now they're together again," William Guarnere Jr. told the AP about his father and Heffron. "He had a good, long life."

 

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