James Thomas Cooper “Jimmy” was born on 21 December 1923 to Walter Newton Cooper and Allie Elizabeth Brown.
Died non battle on 8 June 1945
143rd Infantry Regiment, Company B
Sgt Cooper was initially buried at the American War Cemetery Ardennes at Neuville-en-Condroz in Belgium.
The Memphis Press-Scimitar, 12 September 1949
Services for James Thomas (Jimmy) Cooper, son of Mr. and Mrs. Walter N. Cooper of Eads, tenn., who served valiantly during World War II and whose whereabouts were unknown from April 1945, when he disappeared in France, until this spring when the government reported he had drowned in France and had been buried there by a native, will be at National Cemetery, Memphis.
Born near Cordova, he graduated from Germantown High School and entered the Army in the spring of 1943. Soon he was in Europe, where he was wounded four times, three times in battle and once in an accident when another soldier kindled a fire with gasoline and it exploded. He received the Purple Heart and Cluster for being wounded twice in France. He was cited in the Army paper when the 143rd Infantry Regiment was meeting stiff resistance near a large French town. He and his unit were give the job of silencing several machine-gun positions. The paper said: “The worst of these was located in a three-story brick house. By careful work, this was knocked out, after which Pvt. Cooper led a patrol on a flanking movement to investigate. Just before reachting the building, Cooper suddenly and instinctively whirled to his right, raising his rifle to his hip. He poured a full clip into a German machinegunner an instant before the Nazi would have opened fire on his squad. Three Germans in a nearby trench raced around the corner of the building out of rance. Cooper had wiped out one of the strong points holding up the advance.”
He served with the seventh Army in the infantry in the invasion of France. In April 1945 he was reported in a hospital in France recovering from wounds and soon after “disappeared.” Peace came and still no word from him. His family thought at first the delay in hearing from him was due to reorganization, but as the months went by they realized something was very wrong. An advertisement placed by the family asking information was answered by someone stationed in a Replacement Center at Kaufburen, Germany, who remembered that he was reported drowned or as just disappearing from camp at a River used for swimming by natives and soldiers. This report was received in June 1945. There was no word from the goverment until this spring, when the notification came that he had been drowned and buried overseas.
He lived at 1620 Oakwood before entering the service and was employed in the chemical department of Buckeye Cotton Oil Co. Hunting and swimming were his hobbies.
He leaves his parents; three sister, Mrs. Helen King, Memphis, Mrs. Glen Garland, Cordova, and Mrs. Homer Billingsley, Rosemark, and two brothers, Howard H. and Eddie G. Cooper, Memphis.
- Rank: Sergeant
- Date of birth: 26 December 1923
- Date of death: 8 June 1945
- County: Hawkins
- Service Branch: Army/Army Air Forces
- Division/Assignment: 143rd Infantry Regiment, Company B
- Theater: Europe
- Conflict: World War II
- Awards: Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster, Bronze Star
- Burial/Memorial Location: Memphis National Cemetery, Memphis, TN
- Location In Memorial: Pillar XII, Middle Panel
- Contact us to sponsor James T. Cooper
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