Tuesday, July 12, 2016

PVT James W. Thorpe

courtesy of Anne Cady
PVT James W. Thorpe was born 15 Aug 1918 in Accokeek, Maryland. He was the youngest of the 3 children born to Marion Francis Thorpe and his 2nd wife, Alice Vera (Moss) Thorpe. He had older 4 half-siblings who had experienced the loss of their mother at the age of 10 or less. Marion was a truck farmer, raising vegetables in Prince George's county, Maryland and then as a day laborer in 1930 while the family lived on Mayhew Road in Spaulding, Maryland. The children apparently were not able to pursue an education beyond grade school and in 1930 James' older sister was, at age 16, working as a helper to a hair dresser to help support the family. Reportedly married, we could find no record of his wife but he was apparently a widower by 1940.

James enlisted in the Army on 30 Jan 1940 but was still a PVT when he was transferred from the replacement depot to G Company 116th Infantry on 13 Jun 1944. He was again transferred on 22 Jun 1944, this time to F Company 116th Infantry. This was a time when the regiment was struggling to replace soldiers lost in the D-Day landings and fighting during the 2 weeks after the 6th of June. PVT Thorpe was wounded in action on 11 Jul 1944 near Saint-Lo, France and evacuated to hospital but died the following day, 12 Jul 1944. 

PVT Thorpe was repatriated in 1948 and re-interred in Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia.

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