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Thomas Wynn recalled as ‘visionary’ in veterans affairs

National veterans’ rights activist Thomas H. Wynn, Sr. died Friday, November 5, 2004, after a 15-month bout with kidney cancer. Wynn, 73, a Whitefish Bay resident, helped establish the National Association for Black Veterans and the Center for Veterans Issues, both based in Milwaukee. “He was a visionary,” said Robert Cocroft, chief executive officer of the Center. “He had the utmost integrity.” Born in New York and raised in Portsmouth, Va., Wynn attended Virginia Union University in Richmond. He served with the U.S. Army in Fairbanks, Alaska, during the Korean War era, said his wife, Kay Shellestad. After the war, Wynn worked a number of jobs, from driving buses to selling insurance, said Jill Ralian, director of operations at the Center. Then Wynn took a job counseling veterans at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

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