KIA August 20, 1944
WWII – Invasion of Normandy
Assigned to 3rd Battalion, 318th Infantry, 80th Division
PFC Charles Joseph Thimmig died August 20, 1944 of wounds sustained by enemy small-arms fire during the Invasion of Normandy, WWII, in Argentan, France.
Charles was born October 9, 1918, in Tilden, Illinois. His father, August Thimmig, was full-blooded German and his mother, Allie Stell Brock, was half Cherokee Native American. In 1939, at a swimming hole in Casper, WY, Charles spotted a beautiful young girl and was immediately smitten; when she locked eyes on him, she thought he was the most handsome man that she’d ever seen. They soon fell in love, and married on March 11, 1940. Fifteen months later in September of 1940, their only child, a daughter they named Bonnie, was born.
In September of 1943, Charles was drafted into the U.S. Army from St. Louis, MO, and thrown into the trenches of the second World War. After being assigned to his battalion, often referred to as “Patton’s Best”, PFC Thimmig arrived in Europe July 14, 1944. His unit was storming Le Bourg-St. Leonard on August 17 and then Argentan on the 20th, after having come ashore at Utah Beach on August 3, mopping the Le Mans area, and having had assisted in the Battle of Falaise-Gap. These battles are best known collectively as the Invasion of Normandy.
PFC Thimmig was reported as Missing in Action until August 21, 1944. His daughter would not hear of the true circumstances of her father’s death until 1999 when she received a first hand account from a comrade who witnessed her father’s fall during the invasion of Argentan, when he died from blunt force trauma to the head caused by a landmine. PFC Thimmig’s comrade knelt beside his friend as he lay dying and his last words were, “Tell my little Bonnie and my mother, I love them.”
PFC Charles Thimmig was 25 years old from Tilden, Illinois.
Original portrait was presented October 23, 2010, to Charles’ daughter, Bonnie, during Sky Ball VIII hosted by American Airlines held in Ft. Worth, Texas