Wynn Jr. Robert Emory “Popeye”.

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Wynn Jr. Robert Emory “Popeye”, born 10-07-1921 in South Hill, Virginia, United States to Robert Emory Wynn  (1883–1947) and his wife Grace , born Ellis, Wynn (890–1954). Robert had one sister and one brother Martha Nettic Wynn Allgood (1916-2015)

and William Allen Wynn (1913-1987). Robert was married with Marion Marie Spence Wynn, who died 15-07-2009 (age 81) in Virginia, USA

Wynn attended a machinist course at a vocational school in Norfolk. There he befriended Darrell “Shifty” Powers.

After the attack on Pearl Harbor, Wynn and Powers along with others in the vocational school were shipped to Navy Shipyard at Portsmouth to work on the battleships. Right before they were about to be frozen to the job, Wynn and Powers enlisted in the army and volunteered for the paratroopers. They understood that the training would be difficult, so they vowed they would make it to the end, and they made a bet that if either of them quit, that person would have to pay the other ten dollars. Therefore, later when asked by Lieutenant Richard David “Dick”Winters what got him into the paratroopers, Wynn answered, “Shifty did.”

Both Wynn and Powers were assigned to 506th +Easy Company at Camp Toccoa and received training under Captain Herbert Sobel. Wynn was made Sobel’s runner in Camp Mackall. One night when Wynn was sent out to locate the platoons, he managed to get ‘lost’ and spent the night sleeping. Wynn explained to Sobel that he got lost because he could not see in the dark. He was replaced by Edward Tipper, who managed to offer further ‘assistance’ to Sobel. Tipper survived the war and died 02-02-2017 (age 95)

Camp Toccoa (formerly Camp Toombs) was a basic training camp for United States Army paratroopers during World War II, located five miles (eight kilometers) west of Toccoa, Georgia. Among the units to train at the camp was the 506th Infantry Regiment. The regiment’s Company E (“Easy Company”) were portrayed in the 2001 HBO miniseries Band of Brothers.

Wynn made his first combat jump into Normandy on D-Day.

  He linked up with other members of E Company. He participated in the Brécourt Manor Assault. When the group was attacking the first gun, Wynn was shot in the buttocks and fell into the trench. Wynn apologized to Winters, who was leading the attack, “I’m sorry, Lieutenant, I goofed. I goofed. I’m sorry.” Later Winters in his biography Beyond the Band of Brothers wrote, “My God, it’s beautiful when you think of a guy who was so dedicated to his company that he apologized for getting hit. Now here was a soldier – hit by enemy fire in Normandy on D-Day, behind the German lines, and he is more upset that he had let his buddies down than he was concerned with his own injury. Popeye’s actions spoke for all of us”.Clifford  “The Man” Carwood Lipton  and Miron Mike Ranney found Wynn on his way back to safe area, and they helped to apply sulfa on his wound. Wynn was then evacuated to Utah Beach, and was sent to a field hospital in England. Wynn was awarded the Bronze Star Medal and the Purple Heart for his action.

In the hospital, Wynn was informed that if he stayed out of action for ninety days, he would be sent to another unit in the 101st Airborne. He persuaded a sergeant to send him back to Aldbourne with light duty papers and rejoined Easy on 01-09-1944. He threw away the papers when Easy was alerted for Operation Market Garden and fought with the company throughout the Holland campaign. The Easy Company were the liborators of my birthtown Eindhoven

Wynn also participated in the Battle of the Bulge in Bastogne where he shared a foxhole with Powers. On 13-01-1945, when Easy Company was attacking Foy, several of the men were pinned down by a sniper that nobody could locate. Suddenly, Powers yelled, “I see him!” and fired his rifle, killing the sniper. Later, when Carwood Lipton and Popeye Wynn found the sniper’s corpse, they were shocked to see the bullet hole centered in the middle of his forehead. Wynn commented, “You know, it just doesn’t pay to be shootin’ at Shifty when he’s got a rifle.”

During the fight in Haguenau, Wynn was chosen for a patrol mission across the Moder River led by Sergeant Kenneth Den Mercier. While the men were crossing the river, Wynn fell into the water. Wynn could not swim and he started screaming. Clancy Lyall, fellow Easy Company soldier, later said: “I think he must have woken up all the Germans with all his screaming!” Wynn survived, and would fight with Easy Company until the end of the war. Lyall survived the war and died 19-03-2012 (age 84) in Lexington Park, St. Mary’s County, Maryland . After the war Ken Mercier returned home to his wife and daughter. He later fought in the Korean War, and retired from military life as a 1st Lieutenant. Den Mercier passed away 24-07-1990, age 70..

Death and burial ground of Wynn Jr. Robert Emory “Popeye”.

Later years after the war, Wynn became a structural ironworker on buildings and bridges. He bought an old log cabin in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina and spent his last days with his family. Wynn died on 18-03-2000, age 78, just over a year before the Band of Brothers miniseries was first aired.

Message(s), tips or interesting graves for the webmaster:    robhopmans@outlook.com

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