WILLIAM HERBERT ELLIS, JR.
|The Citadel Class of:
||Class of 1940
||E (Source: Sphinx 1937)
||2-Oct-18 in Wilson, North Carolina
||Wilson, North Carolina
||William H. Ellis (father), Archie K. Ellis (brother), Vivian M. Ellis (wife)
|Branch of Service:
|Entered the Service from:
||774th Tank Battalion
|Date of death:
|Place of death:
||Ardennes, Belgium, Battle of the Bulge
||Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster
||Plot C Row 11 Grave 12
||Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery
||Freshman football squad (Source: Sphinx 1937)
“William was on a mission to assist Infantry in capturing the town of Bihain, Belgium, on the evening of
9 January 1945. he was dismounted from his tank, directing its movement, when he was hit by enemy
small arms fire. He died instantly. This action took place during the counter-attack launched to drive the
enemy from the “bulge”, now known as the Battle of the Ardennes. In giving their lives, William and his
comrades made victory possible in this decisive operation and paved the way for the march to final
victory. William was buried with a Protestant Chaplain officiating and with full military honors at the
Henri Chapelle Cemetery in eastern Belgium.”
– Source: Excerpt from Letter to Mrs. Ellis from the Commanding Officer 774th Tank Bn, 23 April 1945
1. According to the 774th’s After Action Report for the month of January 1945, five men were Killed-in-
Action 9 to 10 January and another 5 were wounded. The S-2 (Intelligence Officer) noted on that day:
“Elements of 9th Panzer Division identified in area. Still encountering mines. Snow hampers ready
Sources: American Battle Monuments Commission, The Citadel Archive & Museum, Mike Stannard ’65, WWII draft card (NARA), Wilson Country’s Greatest Generation, Find A Grave.com
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