In Memory of
Robert Burns Birnie
Beresford, South Dakota
December 17, 1918 – December 31, 1944
Killed in Action in Belgium
Robert Burns Birnie was born on December 17, 1918, in Beresford, South
Dakota, to Mr. and Mrs. James Birnie. When he was young, Robert was active in
the Emmanuel Lutheran Church. Robert attended Beresford Public Schools and
graduated from high school in the class of 1936. In high school he was involved
in many sports, such as basketball and football. In addition to school and
activities, Robert helped his father in the family’s meat market business. After
his father’s health had failed, Robert and his brother took care of the market
until both Robert and his brother Otto entered into the service.
Robert entered into the service on November 13, 1943, and was trained in
several camps, and afterwards, he was able to come home on furlough to visit his
parents in the August of 1944. Soon he was sent overseas to France. Upon
arrival in Europe, T-5 Birnie went into combat on the Western Front. Army T-5
Robert Burns Birnie was killed in action in Belgium on December 31, 1944.
His Commanding General of the Eleventh Armored
You have lost a beloved son and we have lost a loyal,
faithful and gallant comrade.
Your son fought gallantly as a member of the 22nd Tank Battalion in
a most critical
operation of the war. The manner in which he fought aroused a lasting pride in
comrades, his officers and myself.
Robert Burns Birnie is buried in an American National Cemetery in France.
At the time of his death, he left behind his father and mother, his sisters,
Annabelle, Margaret, and Marian; he also left behind his brothers, Donald and
Robert still lives on in the hearts of his family and friends; I know they
will cherish his memory forever. I will also remember the service and sacrifice
of Technician Fifth Grade Robert B. Birnie. He was a hero to our country and a
beloved family member.
This entry was respectfully
submitted by Cherie Forget, 8th Grade West, Spearfish Middle School, Spearfish,
South Dakota, November 3, 2000. Information for this entry was provided by Mr.
Otto Birnie, Beresford, South Dakota, brother of Army T/5 Robert Birnie.