Private Edward Heffron: Private with Easy Company whose wartime exploits were recorded in the HBO series 'Band of Brothers'

 

Edward "Babe" Heffron was a soldier whose Second World War service as a member of the US Army's famed Easy Company was recounted in the book and TV miniseries Band of Brothers. Heffron and his comrades fought some of the war's fiercest battles. A paratrooper in Company E, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, Heffron took part in the Battle of the Bulge in Belgium and helped liberate the Kaufering concentration camp in Landsberg. He received a Bronze Star and Purple Heart.

In May 1945, after Easy Company had captured the Eagle's Nest, Heffron was on guard duty at a crossroads near Berchtesgaden when the German General Theodor Tolsdorff came down the road leading 31 vehicles (most of them loaded with his personal property). He told Heffron he wanted to surrender, but only to an officer. The man who accepted the surrender was Lt. Carwood Lipton.

After the war, Heffron found work at a whiskey distillery and later checked cargo on the Delaware River waterfront. He was prominently featured in historian Stephen Ambrose's 1992 book Band of Brothers, upon which the HBO series that began airing in the US in September 2001 was based.

The series followed Easy Company from training in Georgia in 1942 to the war's end. Producers included Tom Hanks and Steve Spielberg; Heffron was portrayed by the Scottish actor Robin Laing. Along with one of his comrades, William "Wild Bill" Guarnere, and the journalist Robyn Post, Heffron wrote a 2007 memoir, Brothers in Battle, Best of Friends.

Edward James Heffron, soldier: born South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 16 May 1923; died Stratford, New Jersey 1 December 2013.

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