Ernst Braun grew up in Weinheim, Germany, where father was a businessman. The Braun family fled Nazi Germany in 1935 and settled in Pennsylvania before moving to Atlanta. Ernst enlisted in the Army in 1941 and because he was a German speaker, he was assigned to a military intelligence unit. During his service in Europe, Ernst was an interpreter and interrogator of Germany prisoners. He was awarded the Bronze Star for his successful efforts to negotiate the release of resistance fighters and the surrender of German soldiers to American troops.
After his return to the States, Ernst became a sales representative for mens clothing manufacturers. He was a member of the Jewish War Veterans, a Mason, and an active volunteer at the VA hospital and at nursing homes, as well as a regular blood donor. Ernst passed away in May 2002.