Army Col. Edward Shames, Last Remaining Member of WWII Band of Brothers, Dies at 99

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By Melissa Alonso, CNN

Colonel Edward Shames, the last surviving officer in the US Army’s historic World War II Parachute Infantry Regiment known as the Easy Company, died on Friday at the age of 99.

Shames “passed away peacefully at home,” said the obituary published by Hollomon-Brown Funeral Home & Crematory.

During World War II, Shames “was a member of the notorious Easy Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, now known worldwide as the ‘Band of Brothers’,” according to the obituary. The story of Easy Company was then immortalized in the HBO miniseries “Band of Brothers”, based on the New York Times bestseller by Stephen E. Ambrose. (CNN and HBO are part of WarnerMedia.)

Shames “was involved in some of the most important battles of the war. He made his first combat jump in Normandy on D-Day as part of Operation Overload, ”according to the obituary. Shames “gained a reputation as a stubborn and very outspoken soldier who demanded the highest standards from himself and his comrades,” he said.

“In Germany, he was the first member of the 101st to enter the Dachau concentration camp, just days after his release,” the obituary reads.

When Germany surrendered, Shames “and his men from the Easy Company entered Hitler’s Eagle’s Nest where” Shames “managed to acquire a few bottles of cognac, a label indicating that they were” for exclusive use. of the Führer ”, indicates the obituary. “Later, he would use the brandy to toast his eldest son’s Bar Mitzvah,” according to the obituary.

After the war, Shames worked as an expert on Middle Eastern affairs with the National Security Agency. He then served in the US Army Reserve Division and retired as a colonel.

CNN has contacted the U.S. military for comment.

Shames “was predeceased by his devoted and beloved wife Ida,” his obituary stated. “They have had a beautiful and loving marriage for 73 years. They have traveled the world together making lifelong friends.

A funeral service will be held at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Norfolk, Va. On Sunday morning, according to the funeral home.

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