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Retired Sgt. Maj. William S. Trope, USMC, passed away Nov. 14, 2013 in Fort Worth at the age of 88. Memorial Service: Monday, March 10, 2 PM, at the Fort Bliss National Cemetery. Memorials: Should friends desire, gifts in his memory may be made to the El Paso Humane Society. Bill was born Dec. 29, 1924, in Leisenring, PA to the late Thomas and Mary Trope. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, Bill enlisted in the Marine Corps on Dec. 30, 1941, at the age of 17. He served three years in the South Pacific, seeing combat on Guadalcanal, Gilbert Island and New Georgia, as well as China and Guam. From 1950 to 1952, he served as a drill instructor at Parris Island and was featured in a 10-page article of Life Magazine titled, "How to Make Marines" (Oct. 8, 1951, issue). 1953 took Bill to Korea for 1-1/2 years, where he was wounded in combat. His duties following Korea included training recruits at Camp Lejeune, Okinawa, Quantico, and Springfield, Mass. In 1967, Bill volunteered for service in Vietnam and served for 6 months. He retired in 1972, with 30 years of service as a sergeant major (E-9), the highest NCO rank other than sergeant major of the Marine Corps. Bill's many decorations included Presidential Unit Citation, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, American Campaign Medal, World War II Victory Medal, China Service Medal, Purple Heart, Bronze Star with Combat V for heroic achievements, Combat Action Bar, Navy Unit Citation, Korean Presidential Unit Citation, Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry, Meritorious Unit Citation, and many others. Bill was preceded in death by his wife, Lydia. Survivors: Numerous nieces, nephews, and friends. Semper Fi.
Published in El Paso Times from Mar. 6 to Mar. 13, 2014
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