|Sgt. William Burks was with the 393rd Infantry Regiment during the Battle of the Bulge.|
William M. Burks, Jr. never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.
He was born on June 23, 1917 in Arkansas. His mother was also both born in Arkansas while his father was born in Tennessee. William had an older brother, two older sisters, a twin brother, and a younger brother. His mother died when William was nine years old.
He enlisted in the army on January 31, 1937. He last army assignment was as First Sergeant, Company D, 1st Battalion, 393rd Infantry Regiment, 99th Infantry Division. He was previously a first sergeant in the 7th Infantry Division which saw action in Alaska at the Battle of Attu. The 99th Infantry Division was a late arrival to the European Theater so it made sense to have seasoned non-coms like Sgt. Burks in leadership positions.
The 99th had seen little action when it found itself in front of the initial German attack during the Battle of the Bulge on December 16, 1944. Sgt. Burks was captured the next day and sent to a POW camp. He contracted pneumonia and died on January 25, 1945.
His grave is at Mount Carmel Cemetery, Cabot, Arkansas.
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