Amandio Batista, who as an infantryman in Europe during World War Two was awarded the Bronze Star for bravery and the Purple Heart, died yesterday at his home in Milford, Massachusetts. He was 91. A resident of Milford since 1946, Mr. Batista was born in New Bedford and raised in Portugal. He returned to the United States at 17. He enlisted in the Army in 1944, fought in the Battle of the Bulge, and crossed the Rhine and Elbe Rivers before his division was ordered to halt just short of Berlin in the closing days of the war. He was awarded the Bronze Star for his leading of an assault on a German machine gun nest. In another battle, he was awarded the Purple Heart for shrapnel wounds he sustained during his companys assault on Bornecke, a town adjacent to the Langenstein concentration camp which was liberated by his division the same day. He was also awarded the Combat Infantryman Badge, issued to all infantrymen who served in action, the only decoration of which he was especially proud. He served occupation duty until April 1946 at Simbach, Bavaria and Nuremberg, Franconia, during which period he spent one of the best years of his life, travelling throughout Europe and enjoying the warmth and hospitality of the German people. In the summer of 1946, Mr. Batista began his employment at the Draper factory in Hopedale, at which he labored as a molder until its closing in 1983. He worked thereafter as a molder at the Cosmec factory in Walpole until 1991. He was married to the former Hilda Fernandes for 62 years, whose absolute dedication and love he requited unconditionally, and during whose final stage of illness he surmounted his own ambulatory and culinary limitations by assuming without falter the role of nurse and cook, proving even in his far advanced years to be as faithful a husband as he was a father. He dearly missed her until his dying day; she passed away in 2008. He is survived by their daughter Susan Becker, a nurse-practitioner with a psychotherapy practice in Norwood, by their son Paul, a lawyer, novelist and television personality in New York. Other survivors include their grandson Aaron Batista of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, their grandson Jared Becker of Berlin, Germany and Anchorage, Alaska, their granddaughter Leanne Becker of Norwood, their granddaughter Sara Batista of New York City, their great-granddaughter Hazel Batista, his son-in-law Charles Becker, his nephew James Batista, his sister-in-law Mary Smith and her daughter Alison, his sister-in-law Emily Caracino and her children Janice, Diane and Edward, and Mr. Batista's good friend Iris Damson. He will be buried alongside his wife at the National Cemetery on Cape Cod.
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Published in Milford Daily News from Oct. 1 to Oct. 2, 2013