Lt. Colonel Charles B. Bryan,
Printed [Originally] by "Nov& Všetisk", PlzeÁ, Czechoslovakia
To the fighting men of the Third Battalion, 358th Inf.,
living and dead, whose gallantry and fighting spirit,
typifies the American soldier all over the world,
this history is respectively dedicated.
I List of Abbreviations Used
II Roster of Battalion Staff, Company and Platoon Commanders as of V-E Day, 1945
III Awards Presented to the Battalion
IV Extract of Distinguished Service Cross Citations
V Presidential Unit Citation
VI Roster of Men and Officers Killed in Action
VII Personnel Turnover 8 June, 1944 to V-E Day 1945
VIII Map of Central Europe Showing General Route of Battalion from 8 June, 1944 to 15 May, 1945 [Not Included in This Edition]
ACTIVATION TO ACTION
The 90th Division was activated at Camp Barkeley, Texas on 26 March 1942. Officers for the division arrived before this date in order to prepare the billets, to get acquainted, and to plan the training programs. At this time Major V. Strauss commanded the battalion. 1st Lt. Thomas J. Morris, Jr., was the Battalion Adjutant, and 2nd Lt. Clive P, Jaffray, Jr., was the Headquarters Detachment Commander. Other original officers of the Battalion who subsequently landed in France, still with the organization were: 1st Lt. John W. Marsh, of Company M, 2nd Lt. Robert F. Burns of Company K, 2nd Lt. Arnold S. Waterbury of Company K, 2nd Lt. James A. Prugal of Company L and 2nd Lt. Donald D. Benedict of Company M.
Original enlisted men's cadre, from the 20th Infantry, arrived several weeks early also. Among these men were S/Sgt. William W. Masters of Company M, S/Sgt. James L. Leath of Company I, S/Sgt. Robert L. Hoffler and S/Sgt. Marion G. Lanzarini of Company L.
A seventeen week basic training course was immediately undertaken in the hot Texas sun, during which Major Strauss was promoted to Lt. Co. After this course was completed, a twelve day review course of similar nature was instituted. Maj. Jack A. Goodman assumed command of the Battalion at this time. These courses included problems up to units the size of a battalion.
In the fall of 1942, the 90th Division was motorized so that all companies had sufficient transportation to ride all personnel and equipment. On this transportation the Battalion rolled to Camp Bowie, Texas to partake in its first combat firing problem in November. Then in succession, followed Regimental Combat Team and Divisional tactical problems during the months of December 1942 and January 1943. These problems umpired by officers of the 95th Division, were always preceded by long motor marches to contact the "enemy" on Hankins, Cox or Sears ranch. The hot Texas weather of the previous summer now gave way to frigid experiences riding in motor vehicles and pitching pup tents in the snow and sleet.
In late January 1943 the Battalion moved with the Division to Louisiana for a two month maneuver with the 77th Infantry Division as opponents. The final two weeks of these maneuvers were well underway before the Division was allowed for the first time to attack in full strength. The "enemy" was immediately routed and cut to pieces. Near the close of this maneuver, Col. Joseph H. Ryustemeyer, our tough, efficient Regimental Commander, left and was succeeded by Lt. Col. James V. Thompson, formerly Division G-3.
Upon return to Camp Barkeley, Maj. Jacob W. Bealke, Jr., assumed command of the Battalion. Under his able direction, the outfit gradually developed into a highly disciplined and well trained tactical organization.
Early September found the entire Division en route to Yuma, Arizona for training in desert warfare. Operating out of the newly constructed Camp Granite, the Division received additional instruction under the burning desert sun, ending up with a month of maneuvers against the 93rd Infantry Division, a colored outfit. In maneuvers the 90th became the first Division to successfully "crack" the Palen Pass fortified defense line. Christmas found Major Bealke promoted to Lt. Colonel. A few enlisted men and officers were allowed three day passes to see the sights of Los Angeles.
By News Years Eve, the Division was en route on a five day trip to Fort Dix, New Jersey. Here furloughs were granted, and liberal passes permitted men to visit New York, Philadelphia, Washington and Trenton over the weekends. Then came the POM [Port of Mobilization] period which lasted for almost three months. During this time all companies were reorganized, replacements received and the multitudinous preparations requisite for a long oversees voyage completed.
The Battalion moved from Fort Dix on the 13th of March, 1944 to a camp "Somewhere on the east coast" ─ in this case it was Camp Kilmer, N. J. Here the final preparations were made. March 21st and the entire Battalion took a train ride to the New York Port of Embarkation.
Loading the ship took up the next two days and then came the day when we all bid farewell to the Statue of Liberty on March 23rd. We saw that grand old lady a lot sooner than we had expected when our ship, the SS John Erickson, developed engine trouble about 100 miles out and had to return to port for repairs. While the trouble was being remedied, the troops stood unhappily on the decks, watching the pedestrians in the heart of New York, just a short distance away.
Repairs were quickly completed and the boat was on its way again on the 27th. The next 15 days passed with daily boat drills, a limited training program, and inspections helping to while away the time. There were the inevitable submarine alerts, but fortunately nothing ever materialized. The ship traveled in a very large convoy and it was indeed comforting to see aircraft carriers and destroyers on all sides.
After the first few days out, nearly everyone got over seasickness. However, no one ever could get accustomed to eating only two meals a day─and English meals at that. A small library and church services were about the only forms of recreation available and consequently the first sight of land on the 8th of April was loudly cheered.
The Battalion docked in Liverpool, England on the 9th of April, 1944. On the morning of the 10th, all personnel disembarked and went by train through WARRINGTON, CREWE and SHREWSBURY to the little English town of BEWDLEY. From here, traveling on QM trucks, the Battalion moved about seven miles west of town to some peaceful English fields called STURT COMMON. Here pyramidal tents had been setup and this Battalion, plus Regimental Headquarters set up in "Camp A".
On May 12, 1944 the Battalion moved out of BEWDLEY RR station and boarded another English Train. After passing through WORCESTER and CHELTENHAM we detrained at SEVERN JUNCTION, just East of BRISTOL. From here, we moved some twelve miles by truck to a marshaling area in SE Wales. The camp was called LLANMARTIN and was a fairly permanent one wilt all troops being billeted in Niessen huts. At this camp, we dug air raid slit trenches, held innumerable TE 21's, and went on some twelve mile endurance marches. These endurance marches had to be made while wearing impregnated underwear, full packs and in addition, four hand carts per company had to be pulled. The country covered during these hikes was quite hilly.
At this camp the Battalion underwent an intensive training program which included speed marches, calisthenics, close order drill, squad problems and courses on the German army, equipment and language. On Saturdays, there were trips to BIRMINGHAM, LUDLOW, KIDDERMINSTER and other neighboring towns. For those who were so inclined, there were six hour passes during the week nights to visit nearby pubs.
On Sundays, the troops were permitted to visit NEWPORT, CARDIFF and BRISTOL. During the week, only NEWPORT was within pass range. The people in these towns were fairly friendly, but had a peculiar habit of closing all amusement centers and pubs on Sundays.
June 1st and the entire camp was restricted to area for security reasons. Final preparations were made with Battalion being divided into 33 boat groups. On June 4, 1944 the entire Battalion─less motors─moved out to a nearby railroad station. Following an hour ride which took us through NEWPORT, we detrained just outside of CARDIFF harbor. Here the Battalion boarded the Liberty ship SS Bienville. That same day the ship moved out into the Bristol Channel and dropped anchor. It was here that on the afternoon of June 6 we were informed that this was it ─ D-Day. Utilizing huge map blowups and detailed defense charts, the Battalion was briefed on the part it was to play. Everyone was very much excited and eager to land and get this over.
During June 7 the SS Bienville crossed the English Channel and moved into position off Utah Beach, arriving there early on the morning of the 8th. Then followed some anxious hours of waiting on landing craft to debark the troops, Some Jerry planes could be seen trying to strafe the beach north of us.
NORMANDY -- WE CALLED IT HELL ON EARTH
Utah beach was a melee of twisted boats, barbed wire and gaping shell holes when the Third Battalion waded waist deep from LST's to reach France on June 8, 1944.
Off shore the choppy channel waters tossed against hundreds of boats, big and small. extending as far as the eye could see. Long range enemy guns were still intermittently shelling the beaches, while two Allied battleships sent salvos crashing inland from their sixteen inch guns.
Overhead American planes constantly patrolled the area, protecting the troops and ships. A lone P51 came in very low, engulfed with flames and soon crashed in the sea.
On shore a grader was already scooping out a road between two shattered pillboxes. Some weary paratroopers from the 101st A/B Division were sitting near the beach and one of them gave us some excellent advice. He remarked, after looking at our still waterproofed weapons, "Better get that waterproofing off. You'll probably be wanting to use them soon."
Moving along the sandy road that was to take us to our assembly area we observed the usual litter of war. Empty ammo cases, discarded packs, life belts, helmets and pieces of clothing lay abandoned along the ditches and roads. Hastily scratched foxholes, German bodies and slaughtered cattle dotted the landscape. Two knocked out Sherman tanks sat a quarter of a mile in from the beach.
Reaching the main road at ST. MARTIN DE VARREVILLE, we turned south and passed a considerable number of glider planes scattered about in the fields on both sides of the road. After walking about three miles we turned off the main road at AUDOUVILLE LA HUBERT and saw our first German soldier. He was wounded and riding the back end of a 4th Division litter jeep. Everyone stared at him as if he were a freak at a circus side show.
Just short of our assembly area, Pvt. Springer, a Battalion runner from Company K, was shot by a US paratrooper who mistook him for a German because of the green fatigues he was wearing. He thus became our first battle casualty.
Incidents which marked our first night in France are numerous. When the Battalion went into an assembly area in some fields along the road east of ECOQUENEAUVILLE Company L runners had to first root three enemy soldiers out of a bush near the spot they picked as a CP. One of the prisoners, a Russian forced into the German Army, exclaimed, "Thank Heavens you have finally arrived. We have been waiting many months for you."
During that first night the general nervousness felt by everyone was exemplified by the soldier who emptied two rifle clips at a horse in the nearby field. Any shadow that moved was greeted by a hail of lead and questions deferred until morning. Enemy planes attacking artillery positions and the beach area to our rear kept the sky aglow with the orange-red color of bursting bombs. Red streaks of anti-aircraft fire kept criss-crossing overhead as searchlights probed the sky searching for the enemy raiders.
The Battalion remained here all the next day re-disposing equipment and getting ready for whatever might be coming. That night the troops moved out, passing through the southern edge of STE MERE EGLISE and went into an assembly area in a woods just North of LE MOUCHEL. In this wooded area there were many indications of a fierce fight between our paratroopers and the Germans.
At 0800 on the 10th of June1944, Company I, then commanded by Captain Thomas J. Morris, Jr., was given the mission of cleaning out a German strong point in a chateau near CHEF-DU-PONT . The position was covering the approaches to the Merderet river and might hamper the advance of 1st and 2nd Battalions. Company I promptly moved out with the first platoon in the lead.
The company moved through CHEF-DU-PONT, across the Merderet river and assaulted the chateau only to find that the Germans had already pulled out. It was here that Sgt Riley J. Charter tripped a booby trap and so became the first casualty by enemy action in the Battalion.
Meanwhile the rest of the Battalion had crossed the river and swung north. The Battalion, less Company I, moved down the road for one mile and headed west and followed the 1st Bn. As it passed through the town of LES AIS considerable firing could be heard off to the front. This later turned out to be the 1st Battalion engaging a considerable enemy force, By afternoon of the 10th all of the 1st Battalion had been committed and it was necessary to send in both K and L companies on their right.
Lt. Hereford of L Company had the dubious honor of becoming the 1st officer casualty when one of the rounds in a preparatory artillery barrage exploded directly over him in a tree-burst. Sgt. Carl H. Becherer of the same company was killed almost immediately afterwards by a sniper and thus became the first enlisted man in the Battalion to give his life in action.
The attack, launched with K on the right and L on the left, was held to almost a standstill by extremely determined resistance. Our first terrifying experience under a full-scale artillery barrage was unforgettable. Enemy batteries were close enough to hear the rounds start their journey of death and destruction. Cartoonists and swivel-chaired columnists can describe figuratively the effects of such lethal weapons. Mere words cannot reveal the horror and suspense an infantryman feels as he waits for the in-coming barrage. A wave of utter helplessness grips one as the low whistle of speeding missiles mounts to a whining crescendo as it approaches nearer. It is almost like being tied to a railroad track watching an express engine bearing down.
A rapid succession of explosions rocked the ground. Red flames, black powder and the angry whirr of jagged chunks of shrapnel slashed through the air, Amid the bursting inferno an infantryman could only lie and pray. It seemed as if nothing on earth could survive such devastating pounding. Between the powerful explosions of bursting shells one could hear the dull thud of big guns sending more rounds on the way. Screams of the wounded and cries for Medic and Aid Man filled the silent gaps between explosions. The only chance for survival appeared to be getting a lucky or light wound and evacuation to the rear, A hazy, cloud-like vapor hung over the battlefield and drifted slowly skyward as the barrage ended. A death-like silence seemed to engulf the entire area, It was truly a hell-on-earth and only a typical example of every artillery barrage yet to come.
When the attack of L and K Companies faltered to a halt the Battalion set up a defensive line on the right flank of the 1st Bn. and waited for orders. It was in this position that the Battalion experienced its first case of battle jitters. A reconnaissance patrol leader reported back from a forward listening post that the enemy could be heard massing huge numbers of tanks for a counterattack in the morning. Everyone proceeded to spend the entire night digging foxholes down to a depth of at least five or six feet. The general feeling was that this would be a struggle surpassing even the last ditch stand of the heroic Alamo defenders. Higher Headquarters evidently had a clearer picture of the situation, however, as the Battalion was ordered to attack at daybreak. In this assault one enemy halftrack was knocked out. The rest of the noise which the troops believed to be tanks turned out to be the trucks and halftracks used to bring supplies to the enemy. They had all pulled back to the rear before morning.
On the 11th the assaulting companies succeeded in gaining several hedgerows. At the same time the Germans hit the 2nd Bn. on our right with a vicious counterattack and for a long while it looked as though this Battalion would be surrounded.
The attack on the 12th was making very slow progress when Regiment, late in the afternoon, ordered us to hold up while the 1st and 2nd Bns. passed through to attack PONT L'ABBE. Just prior to the attack, P47's gave the town a working over. This was followed by a withering artillery barrage that lasted well over thirty minutes. Following all this preparation the two Battalions moved into town with little opposition. Here they found Germans sitting in foxholes, too stunned from the concussions to hold their rifles or even speak.
On the 13th the Battalion moved up on the North of PONT L'ABBE in Regimental reserve. No enemy were encountered on this day. Then with I and K in the assault the Battalion attacked early on the 14th against the German line west of PONT L'ABBE. Following a savage all-day battle in which the Battalion suffered very high losses, the German line was cracked decisively. Elements of the 82nd Airborne passed through us at dusk and pursued the rapidly retreating Krauts. All companies pulled back into an assembly area. That night the Battalion moved 5 miles by motor and de-trucked in an assembly area north of GOURBESVILLE just in time to see the sun rise.
The Battalion attacked once more on the 15th and made rather slow progress until about 1500 when the assault finally broke through the German line and advanced about one-fourth of a mile. It was in this engagement that Captain Turner of Company L was wounded. The Krauts pulled another of their withdrawals during the night and consequently when the Battalion attacked on the 16th the resistence was negligible. By afternoon, the assaulting companies had just reached LE CALAIS in spite of gradually stiffening resistence when the Jerries opened up with an intense artillery and mortar barrage. Captain Morris, I Company commander, was wounded here.
From LE CALAIS the attack continued in a northwesterly direction with the Battalion chasing rapidly retreating Germans. The troops were halted just short of the large town of COLOMBY by order of higher Headquarters and dug in. Here all Companies remained on the 18th.
By the 19th of June, the enemy resistence in front of the Division had decreased perceptively and so the entire Division went into a defensive line across the base of the Cotintin peninsula while Cherbourg was being taken. This Battalion moved by motor across the Douve river at BEUZEVILLE LA BASTILLE and set up a defensive line along the Madeleine river between BAUPTE and APPEVILLE. Here the Battalion remained for thirteen reasonably quiet days. During this period intensive patrolling was conducted as far as five miles behind enemy lines and for as long as forty-eight hours.
Early on the morning of 1 July, Company L moved out to occupy the town of LES SABLONS. They had covered about two-thirds of the distance there when a Regimental order directed Battalion to recall the Company. This was accomplished by dark.
On July 2, I and L Companies moved up to a main line of resistence west of COIGNY. From these positions, the Regiment attacked at 0515 with the third Battalion in reserve. As the opposition was quite determined both I and K Companies were committed by noon. The attack continued all day in the face of extremely determined resistence which caused heavy casualties. It was here that tanks were used for the first time in support of an attack. By night the Companies had reached the railroad tracks just south of LE SABLONS. From here at 0600 on the 4th the Battalion attacked southwest meeting very stiff opposition which forced them to withdraw at least three different times. By 1800 the enemy's line was pierced as the companies advanced on the double to take the town of LES BELLES CROIX as well as some twenty-five prisoners.
The Battalion then went into Division reserve on the 5th in the town of ST JORES. Here some much needed replacements were received. July 6 and the Battalion was ordered to clean out a small German pocket of some thirty men and one officer in the vicinity of LITHAIRE. Consequently, Company I moved off and by 1725 had established contact with a sizable enemy force. The rest of the Bn. closed in on the position during the evening. All during the night reduction of the pocket continued with Company K helping out on I's right. By dark of the 7th the pocket had been completely eliminated with well over 200 prisoners taken, plus a considerable number killed. Elements of the 82nd Air Borne who had been sitting on a high hill overlooking the scene of action, said that the entire attack was a perfect example of fire and movement.
On July 8 the Battalion moved into position on the southern slope of Hill 122 in the Foret De Mont Castre. It was here that the Battalion ran into the toughest fight it had in all the time it was in Europe and the one that earned it the Presidential Unit Citation.
THE FORT DE MONT CASTRE
On the afternoon of 10 July 1944, this Battalion, which had been occupying a defensive position in the northern edge of the Foret De Mont Castre, was ordered to attack at 1400 to the southeast. The strength of the three rifle companies was at that time 434 men and 13 officers. The 3rd Battalion, 359th Inf. was on this Battalion's right flank while the 2nd Battalion 359 Inf. was on the left. The Battalion crossed its LD promptly at 1400 with Company I on the left guiding on a long fire break, Company L on the right, and Company K in reserve moving behind Company I. The Bn. Command Group, consisting of Lt. Col. Bealke, Capt. John W. Marsh, and seven enlisted men, moved behind the left platoon of Company L. The LD was crossed without any artillery preparation.
An advance of approximately 600 yards was made before any resistence was encountered. Terrain within the Battalion's zone was initially a hillside gently sloping from northeast to southwest. The landscape was covered thick dense growth of plants and tangled vines, almost jungle-like in appearance. Visibility was limited to between five and 25 yards. No roads existed, but one trail ran down the forest parallel to the Battalion direction of advance. Company I guided on this trail. The two assault Companies were each advancing in formation of two platoons as skirmishers and one platoon in column to the center rear. In this formation they advanced beating out the thickets, with contact being extremely difficult to maintain due to the dense undergrowth.
At approximately 1500, Lt. Col. Bealke halted the Battalion in order to regain contact and determine the Companies exact locations. At that time, all of I Company's platoons were in contact with each other as well as the left platoon of L Company. However, the two remaining rifle platoons and the weapons platoon of L Co. were back to the right rear somewhere in the thicket and temporarily out of contact. Company K was likewise out of contact except by SCR 300 radio.
Consequently, the Battalion was halted and Lt. Col. Bealke then requested artillery to fire a purple smoke shell on a concentration number which was believed to be close by. He adjusted the fire until it was immediately in front of the Battalion and then asked the artillery for the coordinates of the last round. Since visibility during the entire advance had been but between five and 25 yards , it was only by this means that the Battalion Commander found his exact location. In the meantime the Companies had regained contact and the advance was resumed.
Shortly thereafter, Company I ran into a German position located behind a rocky hill 25 feet high. The Company was at this time proceeding through thick tangled brush and had a visibility of about five to 15 yards. Suddenly, about ten hand grenades were hurled over the brush and landed in the vicinity of the two assault platoons, causing heavy casualties. Company I's light machine gun section was practicably wiped out by this attack. At the same time, fire from several German machine guns sprayed through the brush, pinning the entire Company to the ground. Even then, because of the dense undergrowth, the platoon scouts could not see the enemy who could not have been more than twenty yards from them.
Pfc. William L. Smiley, of Company I, alone and on his own initiative, crawled forward 20 yards through the undergrowth , scaled the rocky hill and fired several shots over the hill before he was mortally wounded. Pfc. Theodore Wagner (now 2nd Lt.) of Company I, then followed Smiley's example, worked his way forward 20 yards through the undergrowth, scaled the rocky hill and threw several hand grenades over it. The machine gun firing and the hand grenade throwing from behind the hill thereupon ceased. Pfc. Wagner returned to his platoon and grabbed a prisoner whom someone in the meantime had captured, held the prisoner across his chest to cover him from enemy fire ordered the prisoner in what little German he knew to call out to his comrades behind the hill and tell them to surrender. He walked around the hill and eight Germans, three of whom were wounded, surrendered to him. Nine other dead Germans were also found there. Company I by use of this rocky hill now had an observation from which they could see for the first time for some distance in every direction.
At the same time Company L had also run into heavy machine gun fire and hand grenades, and was viciously engaged at close range with a determined enemy. Lt. George M. Bird was wounded at this time when he also went forward alone and killed two Germans and routed several others who were holding up the advance of the Company. Before he was evacuated, he reorganized the company and ordered it to continue the advance.
Approximately the same time Company I was seizing the small rocky hill, Lt. Col. Bealke and his command group, which was about 100 yards behind the left platoon of L Company were viciously attacked by a squad of Germans who came from the west through the thicket behind the assault platoon of Company L. This group of Germans, after throwing hand grenades and firing machine guns, was beaten off by small arms fire from the command group and a small platoon from Company I, which had come down through the thicket. No sooner had this attack been taken care of, than a platoon of Germans hit the command group from the left flank and rear. The Germans attacking from the west threw some fifteen to twenty concussion grenades while the Germans coming from the rear opened up with fire from several machine guns.
The command group was immediately involved in a close range fire fight which might have been disastrous had not the platoon of Company L, which had just passed by, returned and rushed the enemy capturing six German parachutists and killing several. The Germans in the rear were all killed or captured while the ones to the west either hastily withdrew of were killed.
Lt. Col. Bealke then again ordered the Battalion to halt, regain contact, and placed the companies for an all around defense by moving Company K forward from the rear. The Germans were at this time shelling the Battalion heavily from an adjacent hill with mortar fire, and occasionally artillery fire. While this re-organization was going on, the Battalion Executive Officer and Adjutant guided down a platoon of four tanks followed by all the Battalion litter bearers and ammunition vehicles who followed the road crashed through the thicket by the tanks. At this time about fifteen wounded were evacuated by litter as well as many walking wounded. Wire communications which had gone out during the counterattack was reestablished.
The Battalion then prepared to resume the attack at 1850. Plan of attack was to pass Company K with the tank platoon attached through Company L, and to break out into the open field south of the forest in the Battalion zone. The troops were still receiving heavy mortar and artillery fire from a hill which was within the 359 Inf's zone of action. Company L was placed so as to return the fire coming from that hill and to protect the right flank of the Battalion, in the thicket. Company I was similarly disposed to protect the Battalion left flank while K Company went forward. The units on the right and left were at this time at least 500 yards to the rear of the Third Battalion and large gaps existed in the forest between Battalions. Infiltrations of large units of Germans was therefore quite possible and probable as the Battalion had already experience.
The attack of Company K supported by tanks succeeded in reaching the hedgerow just after the first open field outside of the woods. One tank remained in reserve in the forest while the other three preceded the advance by ten or fifteen yards. Two of the tanks were knocked out almost immediately by a self-propelled gun firing from an orchard 400 yards to the south. The third tank was stuck in a marshy spot in the field and consequently bogged down. Notwithstanding the loss of the tanks, Company K went on forward under heavy fire from German dug-in positions on their right and to the front, and reached some hedgerows, south of the woods. The other two companies in the meantime were still heavily engaged with Germans on their right and left in the forest.
At 2000, Lt. Hylton of Company K, unable to advance further and finding his position untenable because of German fire coming from three sides of his company and causing heavy casualties, went back to ask permission of the Battalion Commander to withdraw his company. He was severely wounded on his way back and never reached the forest. A second Company K officer, Lt. Hansen, then went for orders. He also was wounded and did not reach Lt. Col. Bealke.
The battle went on with terrific intensity until dusk. In the meantime, Company B, 358th Infantry, was attached to the Third Battalion and was placed on the right flank to assist Company L in holding off the Germans on the right flank. Because of the resistance on both flanks, neither Company I nor L could advance without the Battalion being surrounded. During this time, Capt. John W. Marsh, Company M Commander, was killed by a mortar shell while trying to reorganize L Company.
At Dusk Company K was forced to withdraw back to the forest and the Battalion Commander placed the companies in a square formation with an all around defense for the night.
From dusk until 0430, 11 July 1944, the Battalion litter bearers and Ammunition and Pioneer Platoon worked down the trail, carrying forward rations and water and carrying back casualties More casualties were found in the daylight including a tank man who although severely wounded had crawled back 800 yards to the Battalion lines. Altogether, some 85 wounded casualties were evacuated from this particular battle of 10 July 1944 to the Battalion aid station, and many wounded men of Companies K and M were evacuated by the Germans after the Company had withdrawn.
On the next day 11 July 44, the Battalion organized as one battle group under the command of Lt. Miller, shifted to the right and attacked at 2100 the positions which had previously enfiladed them. They overran and destroyed eleven machine gin nests and one bazooka team, driving the enemy back in a disorganized retreat to the town of Lastelle, France. After two hours fighting during which the troops reached the edge of Lastelle, they withdrew 400 yards to establish contact with 1st Battalion, 359th Infantry. Together with this Battalion, the companies advanced at 2400 to the near edge of the town of Lastelle gaining the position without opposition about 0200.
By the 12th of July, the Germans had withdrawn and the Battalion, now consisting of but four officers and 126 men in the three rifle companies, advanced some 3000 yards to the vicinity of La Valaisserie with only slight resistance from a few enemy snipers.
In the subsequent evacuation of dead in the Foret de Mont Castre, over fifty dead of the Third Battalion were taken from the forest and fields by Battalion Evacuation Squads. Other units were also working in the area so that the local dead was considerably higher. According to the Regtl. GRO the German dead were at least twice as numerous, although they had evacuated many of their dead on the night of the 9th.
Major General Landrum, then CG 90th Division, stated to the Regimental Staff and Battalion commanders that he believed that the breakthrough in the forest by the 3rd Battalion, 358th Infantry on 10 July 1944, was the factor which undermined the German resistance and caused it to crumble along the rest of the Division front.
Between the 12th and 15th, the Battalion moved up to the Seves river where a defensive line was set up. Finally, on 15 July 1944 this Battalion went into Division reserve in the town of Gorges. Here some very sorely needed replacements were received, showers and new clothes were provided and hot chow was served. The Companies remained here until the 19th when this Battalion relieved the 3rd Bn. of 359 holding a line along the Seves river between the towns of NAV and SEVES. Directly across the river from our lines was an area of land enclosed completely by two branches of the river Seves This received the name The Island, and was saturated with German defenses. This river line was held for four days in face of very heavy artillery and mortar shellings. On the 23rd the Battalion moved back to a reserve area [in the] vicinity of GONFREVILLE where all companies received frequent long range shellings.
July 25th found the sky full of planes. Our bombers were returning from working over the enemy in front of ST LO. On this day the Battalion again took over the Seves rover line defense with I and L Companies on line. It was here that we learned it was impractical to feed hot chow to front line positions. Enemy observers evidently had perfect observation on all positions, extending to areas well in the rear. When men gathered in one field several hedgerows to the rear of the front lines to start serving hot chow the big guns began to roar and the entire field was pulverized with flying lead. From that time on only K and C rations were fed the troops, except when well to the rear.
It was also in this position that the 1st and 2nd Bns. Of 358th Inf., made an ill fated frontal assault on the Island, while the third remained in reserve. The fighting here was so intense that soon both banks of the river were lined with dead and wounded. Under a white flag, Chaplains Stohler and Esser arranged a three hour truce with the Germans for evacuation of wounded. Losses for both sides were so heavy that the entire truce was spent giving first aid and evacuating the wounded, by medics and volunteer litter-bearers from the 3rd Battalion.
On the 26th, we continued in defensive positions while the other two regiments of this Division attempted to encircle the Island. This maneuver was quite successful for in the next day our patrols reported Jerry had evacuated the Island, leaving behind a maze of mines and booby traps. It was one of these mines that was responsible for the death of Lt. Robert T. Isenberg, Battalion Motor Officer.
With enemy resistance completely broken by the armored breakthrough farther east and south of us, the Battalion moved across the Island through LES MILLERIES across the Tautel river and on down to an assembly area near CATHELMAIS, France. It was here that the Battalion saw its first movie and first USO show since landing in France. Some COD, rifle inspections and physical training helped round out the days. The Battalion CP was set up in a large and luxurious chateau, which had formally been a high German staff headquarters.
On 1 August 1944, the 90th Division passed to third Army control. At the same time this Battalion was informed that it would be the Infantry element of task force Clarke which also included the 344th FA Bn., one platoon of 315th Engrs. and a company of the 607 TD Bn. Consequently at 2300, 1 August 44 the Battalion, motorized by the attachment of QM trucks, moved out of CASTLEMAIS. After passing through COUTANCES, GAVRAY, LA HAYE PESNEL and AVRANCHES, the Battalion arrived at ISIGNY, the de-trucking point. From here the companies moved out in approach march formation towards ST HILAIRE DU HARCOUET, an important road center. By moving rapidly and attacking energetically what few enemy were in the way [were overrun]. Company I arrived at the Selune river just short of town by 1100. Here, following a short artillery preparation, K. Company moved in and had the town secured by 1500. The rest of the Battalion then closed in around town and prepared to stay for the night. Everyone was fairly well settled when suddenly an order was received to move out at 1800 and secure LOUVIGNE DU DESERT, another road center about 15 kilometers to the south. Then followed a long road march during a very dark night with enemy planes of buzzing overhead incessantly. LOUVIGNE was taken by 0100 against no resistance. A number of Krauts were shot up while trying to get away in trucks. Early on the morning of the third, Company. K sent a patrol to the town of LANDIVY - some eight km to the east, and finding it unoccupied, outposted it. The people here were very happy to see the Americans and even presented Capt. Robert Burns, Battalion S-3 with the keys to the city at an elaborate ceremony. A bombed out bridge necessitated our staying here during the 4th.
Then on the 5th of August the Battalion began its longest foot march - covering 25 miles the first day, 17 miles the second day, and 20 miles the third day, arriving at ST SUZANNE by dark of the 7th. This foot march was broken only once because a bridge was out over the MAYENNE river, so the troops went swimming there. Enemy action during the three days consisted of about five rounds of tank fire received in ST SUZANNE. The entire 62 mile march was made during days of intense heat and over extremely dusty roads.
During the morning of the 8th, the Battalion moved by motor 22 miles to the east closing in on an area near DEGRE, Company K. was left behind to guard ST SUZANNE and ran into some trouble from and enemy tank. The [company] platoon was released during the day and assembled with rest of the Battalion. Following completion of a bridge over the Sarthe river, the Battalion moved by motor to another assembly area five miles north of LES MANS. It was from here that Major Julius Oehlsen was transferred to the 12th Army group. The 10th and 11th were spent in the same area picking up German stragglers and generally taking it easy.
On 12 August of the Battalion moved by foot north 20 miles to ALENCON, where we out-posted the southern edge of town. During the night enemy planes came over and bombed the northern part of ALENCON, doing some damage.
The 3rd Battalion of 357 relieved us on the 15th and we moved by motor north about twenty miles to CHAILLOUE where Company K ran into some enemy which were promptly dealt with in true Kraut Killer style. From here on the 17th we moved by shuttle march to an assembly area south of EXMES. Company K was just preparing to assault the town when a Regimental order halted them and directed us to move to an assembly area [in the] vicinity of MICHELOT as Division reserve. During the night of the 18th the Companies moved over on the Division right flank and prepared to attack north the next day.
This Battalion was employed on the Division right flank with the mission of seizing the high ground NE of CHAMBOIS and establishing road blocks on the two main roads leading east and northeast from CHAMBOIS, The roads constituted the last remaining routes of escape for the German units still left in the Falaise pocket.
The attack jumped off at 0800 19-August 1944 with K and L Companies in the assault. The initial objective, a hill just south of the east road out of CHAMBOIS, was taken only after Company K had knocked out one Mark IV tank and two halftracks.
At 1300, the Battalion resumed the attack and moved towards its final objective - the high ground NE of CHAMBOIS. In crossing the east road, Company L ran into two halftracks which took off towards town, Company K knocked out a radio car, a command car and one tank at the same time. After each Company had left one platoon to block the east road, they continued on to occupy the final objective. Here they ran into scattered groups of Germans on their way to the only remaining road out of the Falaise pocket B a northeast road out from CHAMBOIS.
As the two companies reached the NE road they set up roadblocks and waited. Company L very soon thereafter knocked out two trucks, killing 20 Germans and taking 31 prisoners. Then two tanks attacked Company L and drove them back one hedgerow. Captain Bryan called for more men, ammunition and bazooka rounds from Lt. Col. Bealke at the OP immediately behind him. He also had his artillery observer put fire on the Germans attempting to flee CHAMBOIS by the NE road.
A column consisting of six tanks, 20 to 30 trucks, towed guns, ambulances with machine guns in them and other vehicles came down the road. For two hours an all out fight raged. It was in this action that Pfc, Caldwell and Pfc. Giebelstein, both from Company K knocked out four tanks with five rounds of bazooka fire.
During the day about 320 Germans were captured, over 100 killed and 11 tanks, eight self-propelled guns as well as numerous other vehicles were destroyed.
The attached platoon of tank destroyers arrived at the end of the battle, but managed nevertheless, to knock out one tank.
On the 20th, the Battalion was attacked almost incessantly by German units trying to escape from the pocket. One group consisting of several truckloads of troops, two tanks and an undetermined number of halftracks attempted to penetrate our lines at 0930. They almost reached the door of the Battalion CP before they were detected. Then the CP swung into action, bringing out its 50 caliber MGs and bazooka teams. Following a furious fight, over 250 prisoners were taken, including a large number of English-speaking Germans. It was here that the 50s really proved their effectiveness, for the number of dead Krauts considerably outnumbered those captured. One halftrack, however, did succeed in getting through and captured four jeeps, 10 medical personnel, and two A & P men before it was knocked out by the 2nd French Armored Division.
In all, the Battalion on this day took 530 prisoners, knocked out four tanks, two halftracks and an undetermined number of miscellaneous vehicles. That same afternoon, an officer from the Reconnaissance Regiment of the Polish Armored Division came to the CP and requested us to relieve them of some 750 prisoners which they held. The Reconnaissance Regiment had been cut off from their supply lines by Germans trying to escape and were almost out of food and ammunition. So, this Battalion evacuated their 750 prisoners, including the Major General commanding the German 49th Infantry Division.
Added to all this polyglot, an officer from a Canadian Cavalry Squadron came to the CP at 2200 to exchange information with us.
By the 21st we had in the Battalion area elements of British armored, Canadian infantry and armored,
Polish and French armored units. This plus our own armored and infantry units really lent an international touch to the whole affair.
On this day the Battalion took 83 more prisoners, bringing the total for the three days to 933. In addition, the Battalion during the same period knocked out 15 tanks and approximately 40 assorted halftracks, trucks and other vehicles.
Elements of the 50th British Infantry Division relieved the Battalion on the 22nd and the Companies then moved to reserve area near SURDON, France. While in this area all personnel went through the usual schedule of COD, inspections, and hot chow. It was here that the Battalion enjoyed its first visit from an ARC Clubmobile.
Early on the 26th of August, the Battalion moved out on its longest single day trip. In all, the Battalion moved some 225 miles passing through SEES, MAMERS, LA FERTE BERNARD, CHATEAUDIN, PITHIVIERS and MALASHERBES. Troops stopped at 1800 in the Foret de Fontainebleau just 25 miles south of Paris B which regrettably was the closest the Battalion got to that famed city. At 1830 the troops loaded up again and after passing through NAMOURS moved across the Seine river at MONTEREAU where we relieved a Battalion of the 10th Infantry, 5th Division. No enemy action was encountered during the entire trip. As the Battalion passed through NAMOURS it saw for the first time the way the French treated women who consorted with Germans. These girls made a spectacular sight as they paraded dejectedly down main street, dressed in their nightgowns and completely shorn of their locks. Civilians lined both side of the street and loudly booed each girl as she passed.
At 1400 25BAugust, the Companies moved out againBthis time to the town of DONNEMARIE EN MONTISE. The town was reportedly not yet cleared so Company L entered it in approach march formation. Just as they reached the edge of town, a two star General complete with MP motorcycle escort came blaring on through. It seemed that XX Corps was in the next town up. So, all Companies promptly settled down. That night, the townspeople threw a street dance in our honor. It was one of those spontaneous affairs of a populace desiring to show their joy and appreciation to the soldiers who had freed them from the oppressive yoke of German Slavery.
All afternoon the townspeople had generously showered The GI's with champagne, cognac and their best wine. Towards the evening everyone was in a mood to celebrate. When a drummer, bugler and accordion player sounded a call from the village square, everyone assembled there. A parade through all the streets of the town followed, ending up in the square. Here the accordion player sat down on a box in the middle of the street. Couples formed and the biggest celebration in France got underway as dancers shuffled over the cobblestone road. Officers and men forgot the war as they danced until early hours of the morning with the friendly French lassies. It was a dance that will live long in the memories of those who were there.
Then between the 28th and the 31st, the Battalion moved mainly by motor some 60 miles ending up in the town of ST MASMES. En route we crossed the Marne river. At ST MASMES, the entire Division was immobilized by a lack of gasoline.
On September 1, following an order from Division G-3, Company I moved out to take care of a reported 200 Germans in a woods 30 miles to the southwest. After searching all day and finding nothing, Company I returned to its positions around ST MASMES. The only good part about the entire junket was that the Company got to see Reims as they had to pass through it both going and coming.
After four restful days during which we had movies, hot chow, and fresh oranges, the Battalion moved out by foot on 5 Sept. We covered about 15 miles by 1800 when we stopped, ate hot supper, en-trucked and moved on another 64 miles by motor. This last truck ride continued until well past midnight ans took us through VERDUN and ETAIN. Everyone was very wet and tired when we closed in DOMMARY BARONCOURT. From here, we moved off at 1000 on the 7th with Company I acting as Regimental Advance Guard. March objective was the town of FONTOY. We covered about 1/4 of the way when Company I ran into some Krauts in a woods just outside of MONT. The AT platoon set up one of its 57's and scored a direct hit on one Kraut as well as knocking out an MG nest with just two rounds, the going was pretty rough so Company L was set in to aid Company I. At 1500, Regiment directed us to break off the fight and continue towards FONTOY as 2nd Battalion would be up soon to contain the Germans in the woods. The march continued uneventually till dark when we cleared TUCQUEGNIEUX, a large mining town. Compant K ran into considerable resistance just outside of town and dug in under intense MG and mortar fire. Company I then moved up on K's right and dug in.
The Battalion remained in this position on the 8th as a German Panzer Brigade had hit our rear supply lines near MAIRY and had to be wiped out. A French civilian reported the next town ahead of us B TRIEUX B cleared on the 9th and patrols verified this by 0900. These patrols also reported the town was heavily mined and booby trapped. It took until 1200 before this was cleared up and the Battalion moved on. Then Company L took off and after some very rapid moving reached the edge of FONTOY by dark.
It took all three Companies to mop up FONTOY by noon of the 10th. Company K was written up in the October 7th issue of Warweek for the manner in which they fought through FONTOY. Then I and K Companies moved on to the high ground on both sides of the industrial town of ALGRANGE. The enemy resisted fiercely utilizing mortars, artillery, machine guns, and excellent defensive terrain. By dark, Company L had the town secured and I and K were on the high ground on both sides of it.
We now held Hill 300 which afforded observation clear to THIONVILLE and the Moselle river. General Weaver visited the hill and was so enthused with the observation available from that point that he immediately decided to have 1st and 2nd Battalions attack to secure THIONVILLE while this Battalion held its position around ALGRANGE.
By the 12th, 1st and 2nd Battalions had secured THIONVILLE and this Battalion moved up to VEYMERANGE as Regimental Reserve. Company I was sent to outpost TERVILLE on the Regimental right flank. Following an alert order, reconnaissance was made in THIONVILLE on the 13th in anticipation of a possible river crossing. This plan was canceled at 2100 and the Companies remained in reserve position on the 14th when the Battalion went into Division reserve.
On the 15th, the Battalion, less Company I moved by motor 20 miles to the town of STE MARIE AUX CHENES. Here the Battalion spent eleven days in Division reserve, during which time a schedule of inspections, training in preparation for the taking of Fortress METZ, movies; GI shows, and hot chow was maintained.
Company I outposted the Mozelle river [in the ] vicinity [of] HAGENDANGE until the 18th when they were relieved and went to ST AIL.
On the 27th the Battalion moved out of STE MARIE on foot to the town of VIONVILLE. From here, Company L moved up under cover of dark and relieved Company F, 359 Infantry in GRAVELOTTE. They stayed there until the 30th when relieved by Company I. All during our stay here, the enemy from concrete fortifications around METZ shelled GRAVELOTTE heavily, inflicting some casualties.
The Battalion less one company remained in VIONVILLE until the 11th of October. One Company was on line at GRAVELOTTE and was rotated every four days. While at VIONVILLE intensive training in reduction of a fortified area was held. Movies, clubmobiles, and PX rations made our stay here pleasant. A full scale demonstration of an attack on a fortified area was held October 7th for Brigadier General Weaver. The demonstration included tanks, 40 mm guns and flame throwers.
Following an alert at 1400, the Battalion moved out by motor at 1630 to ST HUBERT. Here the troops de-trucked and moved up to the line held by 3rd Battalion 357. Relief was completed by the morning of the 12th, and the Battalion commenced an aggressive patrolling policy into the towns of BRONVAUX, MARANGE, SILVANGE and TERNEL. It was while in this position that the first Combat Infantryman's Badges were presented to members of the Battalion.
Company I went to the Regimental Rest Center on the 19th while the rest of the Battalion moved by foot to VIONVILLE occupying the same billets as we had done before. While here the first to go on pass to PARIS left for 36 hours. Company K went to the Regtl. Rest Center on the 23rd.
Commencing at 1300 23-Oct. this Battalion relieved 1ST Battalion, 358 with the Battalion CP being in REZONVILLE and the three companies in position around GRAVELOTTE. The A & P Officer found 800 mines in one building in REZONVILLE and planned to use them in defense.. From the 23rd until the time when elements of the 10th Armored Division relieved us the Battalion conducted vigorous patrolling. The reserve company was rotated as frequently as possible, with every attempt being made to keep the troops dry.
ASSAULTING THE MOSELLE
The morning of 1 November 1944 was cold and hazy - a preview of weather to come - as the Battalion was relieved by the 63rd Armored Infantry Battalion, 10th Armored Division. Moving by motor, the troops passed through MARS LE TOUR, and BRIEY, finally stopping in FILLIERS. Here for the next five days the Companies went through a rigorous training program with river crossing exercises predominating. A few movies, church services and hot showers afforded some relaxation. Captain Burns was transferred to Division Headquarters as assistant G-3. He was succeeded the by 1st Lt. Donald D. Benedict.
Traveling under secret orders, all companies loaded up at 1400 and moved to LUDLANGE. From here, following a hot supper, the Battalion loaded up again and moved to SOETRICH where they de-trucked. After a 21/2 hour March through a heavy rain and in a pitch black night, troops arrived at some German barracks just at the southern edge of the Foret de Cattenom. It was here on the 8th that the troops were informed that tomorrow at 0330 this Division would force a crossing of the Moselle river with the reduction of Fortress METZ as the Corps' ultimate objective.
Beginning at 0115 on the 9th November 1944, the Battalion moved on down to the river bank carrying assault boats they had picked up in CATTENOM. By 0330 the leading elements had reached the river and were preparing to cross. Enemy activity was remarkably absent. By 0347 both L and K Companies were across - with no opposition reported. At 0409 the assault Companies had reached the railroad tracks about 2 kilometer in from the shore. Lt. Colonel Bealke returned to the Battalion CP in CATTENOM at 0505 with a hand wound and said that the crossing had been undiscovered but not unopposed. Captain Spivey left immediately to take command of the Battalion. At the same time, the Germans woke up and began throwing artillery all along the river and up and down all approaches to it. By 0720 the crossing site was under heavy machine gun fire from a by-passed pillbox as well as intense artillery fire.
A forward CP and aid station were established in a cement factory on the east side of the river by 1300. Wire communications across the river were established by 1655 while the A and P platoon continued getting supplies across and wounded back using an improvised ferry.
By the night of the 9th, the Moselle had over flowed its banks and the current was now so swift as to make river crossing almost impossible in assault boats. Wire communication was irretrievably washed away. The Battalion had suffered over fifty known casualties and had reached a point about 32 km in from the river. Company K on the left and L on the right were the assault companies while Company I mopped up in their rear. During the night the Germans threw in very heavy concentrations of artillery at all positions from the West Bank of the river clear up to the front line companies.
On the 10th and 11th, the Battalion continued the advance in face of increasingly stubborn resistance. The Ammunition and Pioneer platoon under Lt. Elwell plus Lts. Vann and Goodman and 1st Sgt. Polito managed to get rations and ammunition across, utilizing some power launches they had scrounged from the Engineers. This was done in spite of a still rising river which by now was almost 250 yards wide. Carrying parties consisting of cooks, CP guards, GRO squad and all other available personnel were used ro carry supplies forward from the Battalion dump. This was necessary as there were no vehicles across. Intense enemy artillery fire inflicted numerous casualties on the troops and prevented the construction of a bridge almost as much as did the raging river
At 0920 12 November a four ton Engineer truck loaded with rations, ammunition and water arrived at Battalion CP. This helped greatly in relieving a threatening water shortage. Following re-supply, I and L Companies jumped off at 1030 against stubborn resistance. By 1315 a patrol had reached ELZANGE and reported it clear. However, when a ration party entered the town at 2100 they took 13 prisoners. A jeep crossed early in the day and was immediately put to work to carry supplies forward.
By noon of the 13th the Battalion had taken hill 262 after advancing across muddy plowed fields and through heavily wooded areas in face of determined opposition. No sooner had I and L companies secured the hill than the Germans began throwing in everything they had in the line of artillery and mortar fire. Here the companies maintained their position in spite of everything the Germans could do. It was on this day that [the] first snow of the season fell and the companies received their mail in five days. Lt. Vann, Battalion S-4, had both legs broken when a duck he was in hit a mine just off the west bank of the river.
On the 14th a platoon of Company I was sent to INGLANGE to secure the town. However, the platoon got its directions crossed and went to DISTROFF instead. They occupied the town about 20 hours before 2nd Battalion attacked to secure it.
At 630 Nov 15 Company K jumped off to take INGLANGE with the aid of one platoon of tanks. However, the Krauts countered attacked at the same time and Company K was consequently too busy holding its own to even attempt taking the town. Extremely heavy SP, artillery and machine gun fire kept I and L Companies pinned down for most of the day. Lt, Parrish assumed command of I Company following Captain Guta's evacuation. By dark Company K had secured a toehold on INGLANGE and was meeting stiff opposition.
After regrouping of tanks and TD's, the Kraut Killers attacked INGLANGE at 0930 and had the town secured by 1100 after taking 30 prisoners, one AT gun and three pillboxes. I and L Companies remained in the same general area helping to outpost the high ground south of town.
On the 17th the Battalion went into Regimental reserve and mopped up behind 1st and 2nd Battalions in the area between INGLANGE and METZERVISSE.
In preparation for an attack at 0800, the companies set out at 0630 to a line of departure position just south of METZERESCHE. The troops jumped off on time against no opposition and the town of LUTTANGE was cleared by 1100. Here the Regiment went into Division reserve and the entire Battalion was billeted in town. The afternoon was spent watching everything from Corps artillery to recon cars move by.
The Battalion spent three restful days here recovering from its first assault river crossing. A number of men and officers were sent back to Division rest camp at CATTERNOM for 48 hour periods.
At 1230 on the 21st day of November the Battalion en-trucked and moved to the town of RETTEL where the troops bedded down for the night. The Regiment was now attached to CCA of the 10th Armored Division with the mission of breaking through any obstacles that might prevent the armor from rolling. The 22nd was spent in RETTEL being alerted, de-alerted, re-alerted and re-de-alerted. A Thanksgiving Day dinner was also served on the 22nd complete with turkey and all the trimmings.
The Battalion moved out of RETTEL at 0730 23 Nov. on QM trucks and motored to a de-trucking area just north of PERL, Germany. The first troops crossed the German border at o745 for the first time. After de-trucking, the troops moved to an assembly area behind the wooded hills just north of WOCHERN.
Following a ground reconnaissance with all the company commanders, Captain Spivey decided that the initial objective - TETTINGEN - could not be taken frontally because the commanding ground in our zone was off to the right of town and was studded with pillboxes which commanded the approaches to town from that direction. Consequently it was decided to attack the pillbox area from the right and then advance on the town from the right rear.
This plan was approved by Regiment and the Battalion moved up a dirt road toward BORG. About one mile up the road the companies cut off and turned due north crossing an AT ditch by means of ladders, and advancing into the Campholtz woods. Amazingly enough, although the Battalion was forced to move across open and high ground, it drew no fire up to the time it actually reached the woods. As the Battalion entered the woods about 1300, Captain Spivey called for a bulldozer to move up and fill the AT ditch so as to have a supply route and route of evacuation behind the troops. The dozer was promptly sent up and did the job.
With I on the left and K on the right, the Battalion moved on through the woods for about 300 yards when they drew fire from Germans in well prepared trenches with barbed wire in front of them. The woods at this point were quite dense and contact between units was difficult to maintain. I and K Companies attacked the enemy and although forced to crawl through barbed wire fences, quickly captured the German positions, reorganized and drove on.
Again these two companies found the enemy dug in at the edge of the woods but routed them out in a vigorous attack. Eighty-four prisoners were captured during the day.
Upon reaching the far side of the woods. It had become too late to move out and attack the defenses in the open, so Capt. Spivey ordered the companies to dig in at the edge of the woods.
The enemy shelled the woods after dark, causing a few casualties. It also commenced raining and everyone was pretty wet and miserable. Ammunition, rations, water and litters were brought up by driving jeeps to the AT ditch and carrying them from there to the companies by hand. It might also be added that during this entire operation, most of the men and officers in the Battalion were suffering from a mild form of dysentery.
Shortly after dawn on the 24th, Company K was counterattacked by approximately 40 Germans of which they captured 18 and killed or drove off the rest. The company was then re-supplied with ammunition by Company L. It was also necessary for K Company to knock out a pillbox which would endanger assault companies from the rear if they attacked out over the open terrain.
At about 1300, I and K Companies jumped off into the attack in the open while L Company moved up into the woods. On this afternoon, Company I knocked out six pillboxes and Company K three. The plan of attack was for K to take BUTZDORF while I was to take TETTINGEN. The pillboxes were encountered en route to the towns. Both companies were under harassing machine gun and artillery fire as they approached their towns.
Company K was abreast of Company I for about 400 yards out of the woods. Then leaving one rifle platoon and the mortar platoon upon a ridge short of the town, the 1st and 3rd platoons of Company K with a section of heavy machine guns from M Company attacked the town of BUTZDORF.
In order to reach BUTZDORF, it was necessary for K Company to cross a wide open valley covered with cross fire from machine guns.. Captain McHolland thereupon ordered his men to run for the town, get in the buildings and reorganize there. The majority of the three platoons made the town in spite of the heavy machine gun fire. Company I meanwhile was heavily engaged with pillboxes and were only able to get to the edge of TETTINGEN before it turned dark. Lt. Rugh alternated his men half in and half out of the pillboxes during the night and the foxholes were muddy and cold. Dysentery was still prevalent.
Upon reaching BUTZDORF, the Kraut Killers took cover in the first three houses they reached and reorganized. They then proceeded to mop up the town until an influx of forced them back into the three houses after dark. The Germans were all around the buildings and it was impossible to leave any of them without being subject to German machine pistol fire.
Shortly after dark, a German rifle company came down the road toward TETTINGEN in a column of twos. The enemy column was attacked viciously by all men. Unfortunately their heavy machine gun was jammed with mud and unable to fire. The column was pretty well cut up with small arms fire and hand grenades, and the Germans jumped into a ditch, gradually infiltrating out after dark.
Captain Robert B. McHolland was killed shortly afterwards when he opened the door of his house to let two of his men in. A German machine gun opened up and got him in the back, His loss was deeply felt by the entire Battalion.
For the rest of the night, Company K men, cut off from the rest of the Battalion, fought Germans who tried to make them surrender. In their desperation, the Germans practically shot the first platoon house down with bazookas and then finished the job with a Mark IV tank. About ten men ran through the machine gun fire to the 3rd platoon house, seven of them making it,
Five K Company men ran right into a larger number of Germans during the night and four were captured, while the fifth was shot as he tried to escape. The next day 21 Germans surrendered to these four men when Company L reached the town.
In the rest of the Battalion, casualties were fairly light and 142 prisoners were taken. A company I patrol was unable to get through to Company K because of the German machine gun fire and consequently Company K was without contact with the rest of the Battalion.
Company I attacked TETTINGEN at dawn on the 25th following a heavy artillery barrage. Lt. Rugh was wounded here and Lt. Marron took charge of the company.
Immediately after jumping off in the attack Company I was brought under machine gun fire from town and from two pillboxes not previously discovered. The artillery FO promptly called for fire on the town and in five minutes the 344 FA Battalion laid down a barrage that hit practically every building. Then single guns fired on specific houses from which machine gun fire was coming. Following this, a heavy smoke screen was laid down, completely covering the town. Company I then attacked again and knocked out the two pillboxes and cleared the town within thirty minutes, taking many prisoners. Chaplain Sidoti was wounded here while evacuating wounded.
One platoon of Company L with two tanks attached then took off and went clear through BUTZDORF. They then withdrew to the Company K positions in rear of town, while the remainder of Company L attacked up the ridge of the right flank parallel to the town, and took the high ground 400 yards to the right front of the town.
At the same time, a tank platoon, an Armored Infantry platoon and the Battalion AT platoon moved into TETTINGEN and took up positions against a possible counterattack. These vehicles were able to move into town only after Company I had taken it and the AT ditch was filled in by a tankdozer.
Just after dark, Capt. Spivey moved Company I up onto the high ground to the right of TETTINGEN as Battalion reserve, while Company L with part of Company K in BUTZDORF covered the town of TETTINGEN. Company L was reinforced by two tanks to prevent a repetition of Company K's experience. A total of 68 prisoners were taken on this day.
At dawn on the 26th, elements of the 10th Armored Division relieved the Battalion which then moved back to RETTEL, France. During the Tettingen Incident, the Battalion suffered as casualties seven officers and at least 148 men. The number taken prisoner was not known.
While at RETTEL, Captain Spivey was promoted to Major. On the 27th, the Battalion trucked to a German barracks just outside of VECKRING, France. While here 150 men from the Battalion went to a ceremony at METZ with Major Spivey as CO of the composite Battalion representing the 90th Division, it was at this ceremony that Captain Bryan, Sgt. Shelton and Sgt. Juricak were awarded the Croix de Guerre. All troops were issued combat boots and new clothes. Hot showers, movies and clubmobiles were available for those who wanted them.
HERE WE GO AGAIN
At 1000 on the 4th day of December, 1944 the Battalion left Veckring Barracks and moved by QM trucks to a de-trucking point near RAMMELFANGE. From here the troops marched to OBER-LIMBERG, crossing into Germany for the second time at 1630. Company K continued on to outpost the Saar river, while the rest of the Battalion was billeted in town. The 5th was spent briefing troops, getting artillery fires coordinated and attending to all the other tasks necessary for a river crossing.
Finally at 0230 on the 6th of December I and L Companies began moving out of town towards the river. To get to the Saar river from OBER-LIMBERG it was necessary to move along muddy winding trails for about three miles and then down a very steep hill which ended at the edge of the Saar. To merely call it a hill is an understatement B cliff would be more appropriate. It was approximately two hundred yards from the top of it to the river's edge and almost a straight drop down. Consequently it was 0515 before the companies could begin crossing. By 0750 all companies were across and had reached the shelter of some outlying houses in PACHTEN. As in the Moselle crossing, the assault caught the Germans off guard. A German Officer who was captured in the subsequent battle told us that we had caught them unaware because they had believed that an attack from this sector was impossible. The engineers had a foot bridge over by 0845, but the Germans knocked it out with a terrific artillery barrage at 1400. Accurate machine gun fire from by-passed pillboxes at the water's edge plus heavy concentrations of artillery and mortar fire forced a suspension of all bridge building activities. Hand carrying of supplies utilizing cooks, Ammunition and Pioneer men, drivers and CP guards was necessary for most of the night.
Early on the morning of the 7th, an enemy counterattack of 100 infantry and 3 tanks was repulsed. The Battalion CP crossed over on this day as well all sorts of supplies which went into a Battalion DP.
By the morning of the 8th we held a line running along the RR tracks which meant that about 3/4 of PACHTEN was now in our hands. At 0630 an enemy tank crossed the RR tracks and withdrew only after receiving four direct bazooka hits. At 1000 the enemy attempted another counterattack of 100 men and four tanks. This was broken up by artillery fire. By this time, the Saar river had overflowed its banks and the water was almost to the edge of PACHTEN. In the afternoon the Battalion found intact a 75 mm AT gun with 22 rounds of ammunition. It was quickly put into use as the only AT gun this side of the Saar.
Carrying parties continued building up the Battalion DP during the night and early morning. At 0500 an alligator brought over one of our 57's while at 0900 another was crossed complete with jeep. Sgt. Ramey L. Allaire had meanwhile found a usable French car and was moving the first 57 around with it. The companies cleared out the northeast corner of PACHTEN during the morning. At night casualties and prisoners were evacuated while supplies were brought over.
Quite unlike the Moselle crossing, rations were no problem after the first day. Every house had a good substantial cellar stocked full of canned meat, eggs, and canned fruit. Hearty meals were enjoyed by all and the K rations were practically untouched in the Bn DP.
By morning of the 10th, we had three 57's across as well as five jeeps and a platoon of tanks. The situation was definitely looking better. However, the Germans continued to shell crossing sites so heavily that it was impossible to build a bridge. Two ferries continued to operate most of the time covered by a thick smoke screen. The Battalion remained in a perimeter defensive during the 10th and 11th while the artillery dueled.
On the morning of the 12th there was still a group of five pillboxes preventing us from making contact with 359 on our left. To reduce these a German civilian volunteer was found. He went out under a white flag and talked to the occupants of the main box. After much involved conversation, they finally came out - 34 men and one officer. That night three enemy tanks were immobilized by our artillery fire and completely disabled by tank fire in the morning. An attempt to use the same civilian to talk the Germans out of the pillboxes to our front had to be postponed due to darkness.
At 0730 December 14 the Battalion attacked across the railroad tracks with Company L on the [left] and Company I right. By 0830 the objective had been taken. The attack was perfectly coordinated, combining tanks, artillery and infantry. Everything dovetailed perfectly and we suffered only one casualty while taking 75 prisoners and reducing 5 pillboxes. The pillbox defenders were so badly shaken up by our intense fire that some couldn't even talk.
At 1830 Company K moved over to DILLINGEN to outpost the Regimental right flank along the Prims river. The rest of the Battalion went into Regimental reserve on the 15th, infiltrating into an assembly area in the NE corner of PACHTEN. The troops looked like gypsies on the move with most men carrying multi-colored comforters, packages, etc. No sooner were we settled down than Regiment ordered us to move behind 1st and 2nd Battalions who were on a line north of the railroad tracks in DILLINGEN. Everyone got ready to move out when a gap developed in the Regimental left flank and we were ordered to remain in position.
During the 16th the Battalion moved over to DILLINGEN occupying an area behind 1st and 2nd Battalions. Photographer Capa of Life magazine came to visit the Battalion in the afternoon and wound up staying for three days. Capt. Bryan reported to Battalion Headquarters for duty as Executive Officer and Lt. Carraway took command of Company L.
On the 18th Company L moved up to protect 2nd Battalion's right flank while I and K companies remained in position. At this time higher headquarters informed us of the German Ardennes counter-offensive, and that there was a possibility that this Division would be pulled back across the Saar to help contain the German drive in the North. The Battalion AT platoon was disbanded and all personnel transferred to the three rifle companies. Reconnaissance was initiated on the 19th in preparation for a probable attack on the 20th. Our attached tanks and TD's withdrew during the night and moved up north to bolster 3rd Calvary's line along the Saar. At 1600 20 December, the Regiment S-3 informed us that we would be pulled back across the Saar river during the night. And so at 2300 the Battalion moved down to the foot bridge site where all the troops crossed over within 55 minutes.
From here the Companies went to WALLERFANGEN, site if Franz von Papen's home, and spent what was left of the night. On the 21st the Battalion returned to OBER-LIMBERG occupying the same positions as before except that Company L was now out posting the river. Here Major Spivey became a Lt. Col. In all, we were across the Saar river a total of 15 days during which time the Battalion took 286 prisoners, destroyed 25 pillboxes, knocked out three tanks, and cleared 21 square city blocks.
At 0630 December 22 the Battalion received orders to move at 0700. Troops marched to RAMMELFANGE where they en-trucked and moved to an assembly area [in the] vicinity [of] LAUNSTROFF. From here the Battalion went into the following defensive setup:
I and K Companies on MLR running through WELLINGEN and BUDINGEN, both towns being inside Germany.
L Company - On an OPLR generally along the Saar river.
Battalion CP and Aid Station - in FLATTEN, France.
From the 23rd of December until the 6th of January the Battalion remained in this defensive position. Reconnaissance was conducted for successive delaying positions as far back as the old Maginot line. While here, a number of men went to Paris. Church services were conducted, and companies all had their first ice cream in almost nine months. The Bn. AT platoon was reformed and vigorous patrolling was maintained at all times.
The Battalion spent both Christmas and New Years here. On both days, the weather was brisk and nights cold and clear.
THE BATTLE OF THE BULGE
Early on the 6th of January, 1945 the Battalion removed all unit identification and divisional insignia following an alert received at 0630. The 301st Infantry of the 94th Infantry Division completed relief of this Battalion by 0830 January 7 and the entire Battalion assembled in KIRSHNAUMEN. From here the troops moved by QM trucks through KOENIGSMACKER, across the Moselle river up through LUXEMBOURG CITY and finally stopped in LANNEN, Luxembourg at 1635. During the entire ride it was very cold and snowed almost constantly. The Battalion moved from here on the 9th using organic transportation and shuttling one company at a time to RAMBROUCH, a very much overcrowded town. Moving by foot, the Companies left RAMBROUCH on the 11th and moved up to an assembly area just southeast of BAVIGNE. From here the troops moved out at 1600 and got as far as the woods north of town when they had to stop and dig in for the night. Early the next morning the companies moved out following the 2nd Battalion. At a point 800 yards south of BRAS, the Battalion branched off to the right and moved up near the SE edge of BRAS where the Companies halted for the night. Leading elements crossed the Belgian border at 1700. Throughout the day, enemy artillery harassed the troops.
At 0730 January 13 the Battalion jumped off in the attack with I on the kleft and K on the right. However, due to inaccuracies on the map and an extremely dense woods, the attack was made too far to the right. Consequently it was necessary to withdraw to the original LD and relaunch the attack at 1200. The attack reached the Battalion objective by 1700. Throughout the entire assault the enemy threw in heavy concentrations of artillery, tank and mortar fire. The Battalion suffered between 55 and 60 casualties due mainly to tree bursts in the thick woods. Eighty prisoners were taken as well as one SP 75, one 105 mm gun, three 88's, two towed rocket launchers, one ton and a half truck, and two halftracks,
At 1400 Company I jumped off with the railroad tracks north of Bras as their objective. A strafing attack by our P47's and strong enemy resistance necessitated committing Company K on their right. By dark both companies had reached the high ground overlooking the tracks, at which point they dug in for the night. During this entire episode trench foot was causing almost as many casualties as enemy action. Freezing cold weather plus no time to remove wet socks were the main causes.
The Battalion attack on the 15th promptly ran into flanking fire from a pocket of Jerries by-passed by the unit on our right. This was finally taken care of and both assault companies moved up to within 250 yds of the tracks. At this point a SP gun caused a considerable number of casualties and kept both companies pinned down. Company L then passed through I to continue the attack. However, the density of the woods plus the considerable toll taken by the enemy's fire forced the companies back to the positions they had occupied last night. It was in this action that Captain Shortridge was wounded and Lt. Boese assumed command of the Kraut Killers.
Shortly before dawn on the 16th we extended our lines to the left taking over 2nd Battalion>s sector. From that position patrolling was conducted until the Battalion jumped off at 1525 against no resistance. The RR tracks were quickly reached and the three tunnels there cleared. Captain Collier was evacuated during the day for trench foot and Lt. Murphy took charge of Company I. A Battalion rest camp was established in SONLEZ and the first batch of 40 men went there on the night of the 16th to get hot chow, clean clothes and a good night's sleep. The Battalion bag for the day was four 88's and one 75.
The next day the Battalion attacked at 0900 and had the woods cleared along the RR tracks by 1300. At that time 357 Inf. Relieved us and the Battalion went into Regimental reserve with K and L companies moving into tunnels while Company I moved back to the dugouts they had occupied two nights ago. The Battalion remained in reserve on the 18th moving back to the vicinity of BRAS where tents were provided. Hot chow was served for supper. The day passed uneventfully and was extremely cold with snow falling most of the time.
We relieved 2nd Battalion in NIEDERWAMPACH on the 19th with Company L outposting the high ground east of town and the rest of the Battalion being billeted in houses near town. Patrols sent out to the front reported no contact with the enemy.
The Germans met our attack on the 20th with only artillery and mortar fire. No enemy infantry were encountered as Company L cleared Hill 500. Company K followed on L's left and also encountered no resistance. Both companies were digging in when a Regimental order directed us to recall all companies to positions as of last night. This was successfully done by dark. During the afternoon, Lt. Richard K. Elwell, Battalion S-3 was hit while directing TD's into position. He was succeeded by Lt. Byron J. Clark.
About this time the continuous exposure and hardships of winter fighting began to show on everyone. Day after day the men waded knee deep through snow drifts, carrying heavy loads of ammunition, clothes and rations. At night the men sought protection from the weather and shelling by digging deep two-man foxholes. These holes were covered with branches, leaves and dirt. Blankets were frozen stiff with mud and snow. Lack of hot food brought about severe cases of dysentery leaving men weak and easily exhausted. Feet were continuously wet, cases of frostbite and feet, black with trenchfoot, caused the ranks to dwindle down with more evacuations every day. Practically every man suffered from a cold and pneumonia sent many more back to the hospitals. The determined fighting spirit of our soldiers received its greatest test here. Because we were so low on strength and needed all possible help, some men who were ill and should have gone to the rear refused evacuation and voluntarily chose to stick it out with their buddies.
On the 21st the assault jumped off at daylight and encountered no resistance. Leading elements moving rapidly cleared DERENBACH by noon. Here the 1ST Battalion 328th Infantry, 26th Division joined up and pinched us out.
From DERENBACH the Battalion moved to BASTOGNE on the 22nd in Division reserve, for reorganization and recuperation. All along the road back we passed knocked out American tanks, abandoned reconnaissance cars, and AT guns B all grim reminders of the German breakthrough. While at BASTOGNE, the Battalion received some 200 reinforcements, saw a number of mediocre movies, and generally took it easy.
This peaceful existence was ended on the 26th of January when the Battalion trucked to WILWERDANGE, Luxembourg. Here the entire outfit was billeted and plans were made for a dawn attack. The attack was launched at 0730 and initially net no resistance with the town of BEILER being cleared early in the morning. A major obstacle was extremely rough terrain with deep snow drifts impeding movement. The town of LASCHEID, Belgium was cleared by 1800 and held in spite of an enemy counterattack of 20 infantry supported by one tank.
On the morning of the 28th, both I and L companies patrolled to the west bank of the Our river establishing no contact with the enemy. Company I then proceeded to occupy WEWELER. The usual preparations for a river crossing were carried on far into the night.
An attempt to cross the Our river on the 29th was stopped by heavy machine gun and artillery fire. The high hills across the river afforded the enemy excellent observation of our movements. Deep snow and very steep banks also hindered operations considerably. Another attempt to cross at 1500 was halted by Regimental order which directed us to close in an assembly area east of STUPBACH by 2400. Under cover of darkness, K and L moved to the assembly area crossing over in 2nd Battalion's bridgehead. Company I meanwhile extended their lines so as to contain the west bank of the river between WEWELER and STUPBACH.
The Battalion remained in Regimental reserve on the 30th moving up to an area just in the rear of the other two Battalions. Company I was released during the day and joined the rest of the Battalion shortly after dark. The roads were now the main problem and it was necessary to use snow plows almost constantly. This cold weather had one redeeming feature B it tended to freeze the mechanisms of land mines, thereby neutralizing them. The Battalion AT platoon moved into a field near STUPBACH during the morning. All three guns and prime movers pulled into a field, turned around and then moved back out onto the road. Next day, a mine sweeping detail uncovered 13 mines in the same field, some of them directly under tire tracks.
During the Our river period, the Battalion crisscrossed the German, Belgian and Luxembourg borders almost a dozen times. Company K and L'S attack on the 31st was met by small arms, artillery and mortar fire. Mountainous terrain and a rain, which turned everything into a wet sluggish mud, made progress slow. Inability to locate any roads leading to the companies necessitated a night hand carry of some three miles by cooks and A and P men.
February 1st was unseasonably warm, and all the snow melted making the ground very muddy and movement consequently difficult. With K on the right and L on the left, the attack jumped off at 0930 and quickly reached the objective B a line just short of the vaunted Siegfried positions. Here the Battalion set up a defensive line and prepared to stay indefinitely. Main action on the 2nd was a Kraut Killer patrol commanded by T/Sgt. Livingston which entered GROSSKAMNENBERG after dark and took 16 prisoners without firing a shot. During the day groups of 40 men at a time were sent back to the Battalion rest camp where they received hot chow, clean clothes and had a chance to dry out.
Elements of the 11th Armored Division relieved us during the afternoon of the 4th. Following relief the Battalion shuttled to WILWERDANGE where troops bedded down for the night. Next afternoon the Battalion moved out to an assembly area in BLEIALF relieving elements of the 4th Division. The night was extremely dark, it rained most of the time and the convoy got on the wrong road for a while. Consequently by the time the last troops had reached BLEIAF it was almost 0500 and everyone was cold, wet, and hungry. En route we passed through ST VITH B or rather, what was once ST VITH. The entire area where the town once stood was leveled B mute tribute to our powerful Air Corps. Shortly after we had closed in BLEIALF, Regiment ordered us to move up one company to protect the Regimental right flank. Company I was alerted and moved up at 1400 to a position due north of BRANDSCHEID. That night Company K moved up on the right and Company L moved to a reserve position behind them.
From this position the Battalion jumped off about an hour before dawn on the 7th and promptly [ran] into an extensive enemy mine field. It was at this point that the Company K commander, Lt. Boese was mortally wounded. In addition to mines the assault had to go through rocket, artillery and mortar fire. By afternoon the Battalion had cleared Helmert Woods and was relieved by Task Force Grubbs. The Battalion then re-disposed for an attack on Hill 519, a fortified position which was holding up 2nd Battalion's advance. Following re-grouping on the 8th the Battalion secured the hill and then turned south again towards the Prum river. The advance was slow and painful with the enemy employing everything from tank fire to small arms. By dark of the 10th, both I and K had reached positions overlooking the Prum river and the town of WATZERRATH. This town was assaulted by Company I on the 11th against amazingly light resistance. Lt. Rugh, seeing that part of the town was on the far side of the river, just continued on and consequently established the first 90th Division bridgehead over the Prum. The 12th Infantry , 4th Division relieved us during the evening and we pulled back to pillboxes in the vicinity of BRANDSHEID. From here the Battalion relieved the 3rd of 357 from their positions south of HAPSCHEID and set up a defensive position. The troops remained in this position until the 15th when 2nd Battalion relieved us and the companies went into pillboxes and houses around HAPSCHEID. The next two days were spent cleaning up, seeing movies and eating hot chow.
Then on the 18th of February the Battalion moved out with the town of MASTHORN as the objective. This was secured by early morning of the 19th against enemy resistance that consisted mainly of artillery and rocket fire. It was in this action that Captain Bryan took command of the Battalion as Lt. Col. Spivey had pneumonia and had to be evacuated. Company G, 358 Infantry relieved us at dusk and the Battalion returned to its former billets in HAPSCHEID.
Following an order received at 1245 February 21 the Battalion moved out at 1400 with the mission of taking two towns 10 kilometers away before dark. By shuttling troops on organic transportation all companies were able to arrive at an LD position by 1800. Company I then secured HICKSHAUSEN by 1900, company L, now under Capt. C. A. Burnett, had occupied HALENBACH by 2000. This was done with 82 prisoners and two pillboxes being added to the Battalion's score. From here the Battalion really tool off and moved to the Prum river which it reached on the morning of the 24th. During this 72 hour period the Companies cleared a total of eleven towns including ARZFELD, KRAUTSCHEID and MAUEL, took over 400 prisoners, destroyed or captured three self propelled 88's, one tank, one 150 mm howitzer complete with prime mover, two 105 mm howitzers complete with horses, one ford staff car and a considerable number of trucks, motorcycles and wagons. Frequently the Battalion would occupy a town so quickly that the Germans would just wander in thinking it was still in their hands.
B Troop, 6th Cavalry Squadron relieved us on the 25th and the Battalion, as well as the rest of the 90th Division went back to a Corps Reserve area. The Companies were all billeted in the towns of SENGERICH, ESCHEELD and REIFF. Here we remained for six days during which time movies were shown, hot chow was served, captured weapons fired, and a Clubmobile and USO show put in an appearance.
The Battalion was awarded a Presidential Unit Citation for the Battle of the Foret De Mont Castre, by Major General Rooks, CG 90th Infantry Division in a ceremony held March 2. The weather on the day of the parade was indeed peculiar. It snowed practically up to the time of the parade and then the sun came out. Just as soon as the parade was over, it started snowing again. Major General Rooks, pinned the Unit Citation Bar on Colonel Bealke and a representative from each company. The Battalion thus became the first unit in the Division to be awarded a Presidential Unit Citation.
On the 4th and 5th the Regiment, moving in Division reserve, crossed the Prum river traveling over roads that were little better that seas of mud. The afternoon of the 6th found K and L Companies in LISSINGEN preparing to force a crossing of the Kyll river so the 11th Armored could pour through to the Rhine. The river crossing and securing of GEROLSTEIN, a large rail center was accomplished in the face of light enemy artillery and sniper fire. However, an attack against the next town up the line B PELM B had to be postponed until the 7th as a number of enemy armored vehicles could be seen moving around there while our armor was still on the wrong side of the river waiting for a bridge to be built. PELM was successfully assaulted at 0400 on the 7th, and the companies fanned out to secure the main road leading east to the Rhine. Then everyone sat back and watched the 11th Armored Division roll by for two days and nights. It was here that Captain Bryan became a Major.
THE RACE TO THE RHINE
The entire Battalion was motorized on the 9th of March with the mission of following the 11th Armored Division. This the Battalion did for the next two days, covering about 45 miles and closing in the vicinity of MORSWIESEN on the 10th. Here the Battalion remained, taking it easy until the afternoon of the 13th. The next move was to EINIG in preparation for a crossing of the Moselle, with the Regiment in reserve. After crossing the Moselle on a pontoon bridge, the Battalion closed in BRODENBACH by 2100.
From here the Battalion moved over some very mountainous terrain to an LD position. Jump of was at 1045 and the Companies took off in true 3rd Bn. Style on another of its infantry blitzes. Seven towns, including NEY and HALSENBACH were cleared by dark with 45 prisoners captured, as well as a German headquarters, complete with maps, office machines and files. Enemy resistance was generally light with some self-propelled and artillery fire being received.
On the 16th, Regiment directed us to secure the north-south road running through the woods east of HALSENBACH. This was done only after a very hot fire fight between Company I and a band of 60 SS troops who just refused to quit. A count nest morning revealed 37 dead Germans and 12 prisoners. It was in this action that Captain Rugh was hit and evacuated. The Assistant Division Commander was present at this action and commended Company I for the superior fighting qualities they displayed here.
The Battalion en-trucked on the 17th and took off chasing after the 4th Armored Division. En route we had to sweep some large patches of woods but captured only four PW's. On the 18th the companies reached the Rhine river in the vicinity of BINGEN.
Next day the Battalion went into Regimental reserve, moving to an assembly area just west of the Nahe river. Company K crossed over at 1350 to outpost the Regimental left flank near SPONSHEIM.
On the 20th the entire Battalion crossed the Nahe, moving forward behind the 1st and 2nd Battalions. At 1410, I and K Companies relieved Task Force Speiss about three-fourths a kilometer short of BRETZENHEIM. It was here that an enemy raiding patrol of 50 men destroyed one of our tanks and generally raised all kinds of hell until T/5 Garret of the Battalion AT platoon hopped on a jeep and turned loose with a .50 cal. Machine gun, effectively dispersing the patrol.
The attack against BRETZENHEIM was launched at 0550 on the 21st with I and K Companies in the assault. Enemy resistance was very determined and included heavy artillery, mortar and 20 mm AA gun fire. The town was finally secured by 1800 but only after the Battalion had suffered 36 casualties and fought for almost every house. Mines and booby traps were also something to guard against. A total of 165 prisoners were taken on this day.
From here the Battalion attacked MAINZ at 0600 the next morning. By noon K and L companies had cleared 60 square blocks, taken 240 prisoners and once again reached the Rhine river. The city of MAINZ was mostly rubble due to repeated air attacks and there was hardly a single building left intact. Numerous road blocks, mines and debris created a big problem as almost all the streets were so filled with rubble that vehicles could not pass.
Following a final mop-up of the city on the morning of the 23rd, the 1st Battalion relieved us and the Companies assembled in BRETZENHEIM as Regimental reserve.
THE BEGINNING IF THE END
On the morning of the 24th of March the entire Battalion en-trucked and moved to SELZEN. From here the troops went by foot across the Rhine river on the same bridgehead established the day before by the 5th Division. This area was jammed with traffic. Tanks, trucks, artillery pieces and jeeps waited impatiently for their turn to move across and get out of the hot zone. Anti-aircraft units were already in position every few yards.
Third Battalion units were across and moving slowly towards as assembly area near LEEHEIM when several enemy bombers screamed down out of the clouds, bombing and strafing the bridgehead.. Hundreds of anti-aircraft guns filled the sky with streaking tracers and flak bursts, knocking down at least two of the raiders and driving the others away. One man was wounded in the strafing attack. That night the Battalion bivouacked in an open field near LEEHEIM while enemy planes kept the sky aglow with bursting bombs, anti-aircraft shelling and flares which seemed to hang motionless in the sky, casting a yellow-red light over the ground.
Using an armored approach march formation the Battalion covered 18 miles, took 34 prisoners , cleared over ten towns and wound up in LANGEN on the night of the 25th. Next morning the Battalion took off again covering some 12 miles before stopping for the night near OBERSTHAUSEN. 163 prisoners were taken on this day against enemy resistance that consisted only of scattered small arms and machine gun fire.
In preparation for an assault crossing of the Main river, the Battalion moved up to DIETESHEIM the next day. At 0350 28 March the leading elements of the Battalion crossed the Main river without firing a shot. By 1120 the companies had reached MITTELBUCHEN a fairly large town about six miles inland where they held up for the night while waiting for the flank units to come abreast. A prisoner taken revealed the reason our crossing had been unopposed. It seemed that the unit which was holding down the sector of the river where we crossed was supposed to have been relieved the night before. Their relief never showed so they just took off and left the river unguarded.
From MITTELBUCHEN the Battalion moved to KILIANSTADTEN on the 29th. The Battalion was motorized here on the 30th and divided into two task forces.
By night the town of GEDERN B some 25 miles from KILIANSTADTEN B was reached and secured. En route the Battalion cleared the town of HERZENHAIN where there were 400 Polish women who had been used there as slave labor for the factories. The reception they accorded us was reminiscent of France and it was with deep regret that the Battalion moved on from here. On the 31st we covered another 25 miles to the northeast stopping for the night in the vicinity of SANDLOFS.
On the 2nd of April, the battalion, still motorized, advanced 15 miles to the east reaching the town of AUSBACH where the Battalion stopped for the night. Objective for the 3rd was the large town of VACHA. This was assaulted bu I and K Companies. Here the Battalion lost one of its best line non-coms B T/Sgt. William W. Masters of Company K. A sniper shot him just as the battle was nearing an end. Following a fierce fight, VACHA was secured by 1800. It was here that the 2nd platoon of Company I shot up an enemy locomotive attempting to escape. From VACHA the Companies pushed on to the Felda river where they held up for the night.
During this time Company L was also very busy. Earlier in the day German civilians had fired on American troops in the small village of UNTERBREIZBACH. On orders from higher headquarters Companies K and L moved in and proceeded to methodically burn down the town. From house to house the soldiers moved, clearing out civilians and setting fire to each building. Hugh pillars of black smoke blanketed the town as the place became a raging inferno of flames care was taken to inform civilians exactly why this action was necessary. Since this was the first incident in our Corps in which an entire town was leveled by burning the Germans were thus served notice what to expect if civilians continued to oppose American troops.
The famed salt mine of MERKERS was cleared early on the 4th by Company I patrol, all that the Battalion knew at the time, however, was that the mine contained some German equipment and money. This much the troops learned from the slave laborers as they passed through. It was not until days later the Division MP's discovered the mine contained the largest treasure hoard ever found. Everyone in Company I is still sorry that they did not have more time to spend in MERKERS. From here the battalion pushed rapidly forward clearing the resort town of BAD SALZUNGEN and securing a bridgehead over the Werra river before dark.
The picturesque hospital town of BAD LIEBENSTEIN surrendered early on the 5th complete with over 1000 German soldiers patients. The Companies had just cleared here when a Division order halted us in place. We were relieved here on the 6th by the 345th Infantry , 87th Division.
The entire Battalion then went back to IMMELBORN. While here, Major Morris was transferred to 2nd Battalion and Captain Clive P. Jaffray took over the position of Battalion Executive Officer. The position of Battalion Adjutant was taken over by Lt. John W. Crotty.
Once again motorized, the Battalion moved out on the 8th to the small and very crowded town of HEIDERSBACH, passing through ZELLA MEHLIS, famed for the manufacture of Walther and Suhl pistols. From here K and L Companies moved up to STUTZERBACH to protect the Regimental left flank. The rest of the Battalion moved up to STUTZERBACH to protect the Regimental right flank. The rest of the Battalion moved up to STUTZERBACH on the 9th. This town is stretched out in a valley for almost two miles with tree covered mountains on both sides. The Battalion went into Division reserve here on the 10th and spent a fairly peaceful day.
Reverting back to Regiment on the 11th, we moved to MOHRENBACH where Company I outposted the Regimental left near WILMERSDORF. By 1000 of the 12th the Battalion was committed with the mission of taking GRAFENTHAL, a large road center 25 kilometers to the east. this was successfully accomplished by dark with the armored assault elements encountering only one defended road block. The 13th was another day of rapid movement over very hilly country and against light resistance. Night found the troops in WURZBACH.
The large and modern town of LOBENSTEIN was secured by 0815-14-April. The OP party entered town just in time to see a German locomotive go whizzing by B destination east. Everyone was too surprised to shoot at it. From LOBENSTEIN the Battalion swept on to the Saale river and found no bridges intact in our area. Consequently we had to cross in 2nd Battalion's sector where the river narrowed down to a mere trickle. The BERLIN-MUNICH autobahn was cut late in the afternoon as the companies encountered hundreds of Germans fleeing on anything that would move. The Battalion gathered up 170 prisoners during the day.
Mission for the 15th was the Division Objective B the large industrial town of HOF. As planned, this Battalion was to take the entire town with the 90th Recon Troop assisting if necessary. With Company I mounted on the platoon of tanks and the platoon of TD's and with K and L Companies motorized to cover the flanks the Battalion moved out at 0730. KODITZ B the last town before HOF B was taken by 1100 after one enemy tank had been knocked out and 95 prisoners taken. Company I reached the outskirts of HOF by 1300 and ran into a vicious house to house fight. Snipers firing out of windows made every street a death trap.
Some blocks could be taken only by blasting holes in walls between houses and advancing in this manner. By nightfall all three rifle companies were engaged and the town only three-fourths cleared. The battle continued after dark. All GI's were instructed by Regimental order to remain inside and avoid streets. All night long the sharp crack of the M1 rifle, the rat-tat-tat of machine guns on tanks and in doorways made echos ring up and down the debris strewn streets. Trigger-fingered soldiers stood alert in advantageous positions B opening up immediately at any noise or moving shadow. A few civilians attempting to their homes, or elsewhere under cover of darkness, paid for their rashness with their lives.
The town was finally secured by noon of the 16th after 825 prisoners had been taken. In the hospitals in town there were at least 4,000 wounded German soldiers. HOF had a normal population of 50,000 and included a large number of warehouses, banks, hotels, a large shopping district and extensive marshaling yards still in surprisingly good condition.
The people of HOF were all certain that the American soldiers were going to kill everyone of them. One amusing incident occurred here. A guard saw three Germans carrying a fourth one on a stretcher. When he called them to halt, the one German on the stretcher got up and started running away faster that the three who had been carrying him. One burst from the guard's BAR brought the episode to an abrupt conclusion. The Battalion also uncovered a number of liquor warehouses. During the afternoon of the 16th the Battalion pushed out to the Army Restraining Line and held up.
From this position, a Task Force consisting of Company I on armor, the Regimental I and R platoon, attached heavy machine guns from Company M and the Battalion command group left on the morning of the 18th with the mission of crossing the Czechoslovakian border. This was accomplished when 1st Lt, Merrill B. Rudes, Battalion s-2, crossed the border at 0955, thus becoming the first American soldier to do so. And consequently, this Battalion became the first Allied unit to cut clear across Germany. The Task Force returned at 1200, bringing with them 36 prisoners they had gathered during the journey.
WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE
On 18 April the Battalion set off on a seven day chase which covered a distance of 123 kilometers and netted over 500 prisoners. We passed through OBER-WEISSENBACH, BRAND, FALKENBERG, ELLENBACH, WALDTHURN and ESLARN. During this chase the Battalion encountered only negligible resistance while moving through terrain ranging from open and solid to tree covered swamps. The German concentration camp at FLOSSENBURG was liberated on the 23rd with a mere 1163 of the original 16,000 prisoners still there. The others had either been moved away or killed. Among the more important personalities held here were Joseph Stalin's son, a British General, the former Prince of Bavaria, and a large number of French officers. A Messerschmidt factory was also found on the camp grounds.
During the morning of the 25th the Battalion assembled in ESLARN and watched the 359th Inf. roll past. Companies I and K moved out in the afternoon and set up six road blocks along the Czech-German border while Company L and the Battalion CP moved to DIETERSDORF.
The 42nd Cavalry Squadron relieved Company K on the morning of the 26th and they went into Battalion reserve while Company L left to set up three road blocks south of Company I. A patrol encountered 50 Germans in SCHWARZBACH. The patrol withdrew under fire and then issued the Krauts a 15 minute ultimatum, which was refused. So, the town was leveled and 97 Krauts taken prisoner.
The 1st Battalion relieved us on the 27th and we assembled in the vicinity of HILTERSRIED as Regimental reserve. Here the Battalion stayed for three days during which time troops saw a USO show, movies, attended church services and generally rested up.
May 1st the Battalion was motorized and moved out to a de-trucking area just short of HASELBACH, Czechoslovakia. Our mission was ro break through nearly 8 kilometers of woods and thereby secure a dominating mountain ridge. From the de-trucking point, I and K Companies moved up to an LD passing through elements of the 2nd Battalion . Then with Company K moving along the north side of the WALDMUNCHEN-DOMAđLICE road and Item Company moving along the south side the last hard fight of the Battalion began. The enemy strongly defended the road knocking out two of our tanks and inflicting 34 casualties, including six dead. By dark, I and K had reduced three road blocks, destroyed one Mark IV tank, taken 110 prisoners and cleared six kilometers of extremely dense woods. As it was impossible to form any kind of a defensive line along the road two companies buttoned up in a perimeter defense around CAPARTICE. Striking out at 0735 the next morning the companies encountered no resistance as they advanced to KLENTSCH B our part of the Regimental objective. Company K then proceeded to outpost the town while I relieved the 2nd Battalion in CHODOV and out posted that town.
The 38th Inf., 2nd Division relieved us the next morning and the Bn. Moved to an assembly area some 20 miles to the south. From here the Battalion struck out toward KIRCHAITNACH on the 4th. The area around KIRCHAITNACH is one of widely scattered single buildings, resulting in the Bn. being spread out over nearly 12 square miles. Here Major Bryan received his well earned Lt. Colonelcy.
The 5th was another moving day B this time for 30 miles to the southeast with the entire Battalion winding up in the seven houses and barns that make up GLASERWALD.
The first definite indication that the war was nearly over came on May 6th when 862 men and 127 officers surrendered to the Battalion saying that they had orders to do so from Admiral Doenitz. It was on this day that Captain Jaffray, Chaplain Sidoti and 1st Sgt. Polito inadvertently liberated KAŠPERSKÉ HORY, where the Battalion spent the night.
At 1125 on the 7th day of May 1945 Regiment informed us that the war was over as of 0147 that morning. No one was especially enthused as the approach of the end had been apparent for some time. By 1800 all of the Battalion had crossed into Bohemia from Sudetenland. Fraternizing was now legal, and everyone proceeded to make the most of it. The people in the towns the Battalion was occupying were the most hospital we've yet encountered. The Battalion remained for two days in the vicinity of STRAŠÍN enjoying band concerts, street dances, movies and hot chow.
On the 10th day of May we moved north some 25 miles to take up a blocking position along the PLZEŔ-PÍSEK road near KASEJOVIC. Except for some road blocks the entire battalion was billeted in town. Here everyone had a wonderful time with dances, movies and concerts almost every day. Hidden liquor was brought forth and the Victory celebration started. A White Russian Division which had been fighting for the Germans gave us some trouble here. The war's end found them on the Red Russian side of the road, and this apparently did not suit them. So they tried crossing the road over to the American side. It took the entire Battalion to round them up and get them back where they belonged.
While here, the first group of men to leave under the point system were checked out and started on the way home.
The move to Kreis Waldmunchen was made on the 15th of May. Within the Kreis the following dispositions were made B
Company I B Billeted in the eastern edge of WALDMUNCHEN
Company K B Initially on outpost along the Czech border
Company L B In ROTZ at the western end of the Kreis
Company M B In SCHONTHAL near the center of the Kreis
Hdqs, Co. and Bn. CP B In WALDMUNCHEN.
An officer's quarters, mess halls, swimming pools, a combination gymnasium-auditorium, a photoshop, a 50-horse riding stable and a Battalion newspaper were all planned as the Battalion tentatively took over Military Government duties and wondered what was in store for it. . . . .
LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS USED
A/B B Air Borne, used to designate units of paratroop and glider forces
AT B Anti-tank
BAR B Browning Automatic rifle
CC(A) B Combat Command, unit of an armored division capable of operating entirely by itself.
CO B Commanding Officer
COD B Close Order Drill
CP B Command Post
DP B Distribution Point, a place where supplies are broken down for distribution to companies or stored for future emergencies.
FA B Field Artillery
FO B Forward Observer, for artillery Battalions
GRO B Graves Registration Officer
I & R B Intelligence & Reconnaissance
LD B Line of Departure
M1 B Garand Rifle, primary weapon of the infantry
MLR B Main Line of Resistance
OP B Observation Post
OPLR B Outpost Line of Resistance
PW's B Prisoners of War
QM B Quartermaster
S-1 B Adjutant or Personnel Officer, Commander of Headquarters Company
S-2 B Intelligence Officer, assembles information for use in planning future operations
S-3 B Operations Officer, in charge of section which plans all movements among the unit
S-4 B Supply Officer, supervises ordering and distribution of all supplies among the unit
Item B Company I Used as part of the phonetic
King B Company K alphabet for accurate
Love B Company L transmission over telephone
Mike B Company M lines and radio
Kraut Killers B Name adopted by Company K soon after arrival in France
Liquidators B Favorite Title of Company L
ROSTER OF BATTALION STAFF AND
AS OF V-E, 1945
Commanding Officer Lt. Colonel Charles B. Bryan
Executive Officer Captain Clive P. Jaffray, Jr.
S-1 1st Lt. John W. Crotty
S-2 1st Lt. Merrill D. Rudes
S-3 1s.t. Byron J. Clark
S-4 1st Lt. Jack L. Goodman
Chaplain Captain Anthony R. Sidoti
Battalion Surgeon Captain Charles A. White
MAC Officer 1st Lt. Anthony A. Reinel
Ammunition & Pioneer Officer 1st Lt. William D. Jones
Motor Officer 1st Lt. Theodore M. Dorsett, Jr.
Antitank Officer 1st Lt. Clayton L. Rise
Liaison Officer 1st Lt. Lynn H. Taylor
Battalion Sergeant Major T/Sgt. Alan D. Tory
Headquarters Company 1st Sergeant 1/Sgt. Salvatore A. Polito
Commanding Officer Captain Charles P. Parrish
Executive Officer 1st. Lt. William A. Rogers
1st Platoon S/Sgt. David W. Sappington
2nd Platoon 2nd Lt. Robert L. Wilk
3rd Platoon 2nd Lt. Leander W. O'Niel
4th Platoon S/Sgt. Stanley W. Danielson
1st Sergeant 1st Sgt. George E. Whittaker
Commanding Officer 1st Lt. J. V. Wall
Executive Officer 1st Lt. Anthony M. Sedar
1st Platoon 1st Lt. Stanley M. Dutcher
2nd Platoon 2nd Lt. Lee R. Falkenstein
3rd Platoon 1st Lt. Robert L Weatherly
4th Platoon T/Sgt. John B. Caron
1st Sergeant 1st Sgt. Rolfe E. Haselton
Commanding Officer Captain Connor A. Burnette, Jr.
Executive Officer 1st Lt. Kenneth B. Turk
1st Platoon 1st Lt. John B. Leedom
2nd Platoon S/Sgt. Paul H. Hokoana
3rd Platoon 1st Lt. Antonine G. Fleming
4th Platoon 1st Sgt. Angelo B. Russo
Commanding Officer Captain John E. Mateyko
Executive Officer 1st Lt. Frank E. Gatewood
1st Platoon T/Sgt. James W. Pierson
2nd Platoon S/Sgt. Dwight A. Patrick
3rd Platoon 1st Lt. Sam E. McElroy
1st Sergeant M/Sgt. Clyde E. Stanley
AWARDS PRESENTED TO THE THIRD
8 JUNE 1944 TO V-E DAY 1945
HEADQUARTERS AND HEADQUARTERS COMPANY
DSC B 3
SILVER STARS -12
BRONZE STARS - 64
CROIX de GUERRE - 2
DSC B 4
SILVER STARS B 29
BRONZE STARS B 33
CROIX de GUERRE B 1
DSC B 8
SILVER STARS B 38
BRONZE STARS B 31
DSC B 1
SILVER STARS B 29
BRONZE STARS B 51
DSC B 1
SILVER STARS B 29
BRONZE STARS B 64
CROIX de GUERRE B 1
DISTINGUISHED SERVICE CROSS AWARDS
8 JUNE 1944 TO V-E DAY 1945
Seventeen members of this Battalion have been awarded the Distinguish Service Cross. The actions which gave them this high honor are given below.
HEADQUARTERS AND HEADQUARTERS COMPANY
Lieutenant Colonel JACOB W. BEALKE, JR., 0305 676, Infantry, 3rd Battalion, 358 Infantry Regiment, 90th Infantry Division, United States Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy. On 10 July 1944, Lt. Colonel BEALKE, commanding the3rd Battalion, 358 Infantry, 90 Infantry Division, with 6 man of his battalion headquarters was advancing through the dense under growth of the FORET DE MONT CASTRE, FRANCE, between his two assault companies. The Battalion mission was to clear the forest of the enemy. After advancing some 400 yards into the forest approximately 20 paratroopers from the elite 5th German Parachute Division, attacked fanatically, screaming, throwing hand grenades and firing machine pistols. Colonel BEALKE, killed two of the enemy with hand grenades, wounded a third and took two others prisoner. The enemy formation broke. A second German group then attacked from the right flank, but Colonel BEALKE killed two with his pistol, one falling at his feet. Twenty additional soldiers arrived as reinforcement just before a third enemy group attacked from the rear of Colonel BEALKE's group. Of the 3rd attacking party 3 were killed, 8 taken prisoner and the remainder disappeared. Colonel BEALKE then continued advancing through the forest. About 200 yards deeper into the timber three enemy grenade launcher teams opened fire. Colonel BEALKE wounded the German officer commanding the position, and the rest of his Detachment killed, wounded or dispersed the enemy crews. Receiving word by radio, that a company of enemy infantry, in column, was proceeding across his front, Colonel BEALKE with an Artillery observer and one wireman swung to the left to reach high ground for observation. The observer was wounded and wireman killed. Colonel BEALKE laid his own wire line to the observation point and from their directed artillery fire against the enemy column for more than an hour until it was destroyed or dispersed. Throughout this action Colonel BEALKE was under heavy mortar and small arms fire. From the observation post he ordered by radio the reorganization and employment of his Battalion and directed the completion of the mission -- occupation of the woods. Through the extraordinary heroism, aggressive leadership and dogged determination, in spite of heavy casualties among his officers and men, Colonel BEALKE led his men to a brilliant victory, one of the most outstanding in the operations of his Division in NORMANDY. His actions were in the highest traditions of the military service of United States.
Staff Sergeant GUS HAMPL, 37156279, 358 Infantry Regiment, 90th Infantry Division, United States Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy. On 12 June 1944, in the vicinity of PICAUVILLE, FRANCE, the attack of Company L, 358 Infantry, encountered the direct fire of an enemy 75 mm gun which was strongly emplaced and protected by small arms fire and mortar fire. Sergeant HAMPL and one other man, members of a demolition team attached to the rifle company, volunteered to attempt the destruction of the gun. A friendly mortar barrage drove the enemy gun crew to shelter in a nearby building while Sergeant HAMPL and his companion worked their way forward. They reached the gun and, although under enemy observation and fire, placed an explosive charge in the breach and demolished it. They then threw incendiary grenades into the building in which the enemy had taken cover, setting it afire and forcing them to surrender. The heroic actions of Sergeant HAMPL, and his courageous devotion to duty exemplified the highest traditions of the military forces of United States.
Private First-class EDUARDO F. RAMIREZ, 38000897, Infantry, Headquarters Co., 358 Infantry regimen, 90th Infantry Division, United States Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy. On 12 June 1944, in the vicinity of PICAUVILLE, FRANCE, the attack of Company L, 358 Infantry, encountered the direct fire of an enemy 75 mm gun which was strongly emplaced and protected by small arms fire and mortar fire. Private RAMIREZ and one other man, members of a demolition team attached to the rifle company, volunteered to attempt the destruction of the gun. A friendly mortar barrage drove the enemy gun crew to shelter in a nearby building while Private RAMIREZ and his companion worked their way forward. They reached the gun and, although under enemy observation and fire, placed an explosive charge in the breach and demolished it. They then threw incendiary grenades into the building in which the enemy had taken cover, setting it afire and forcing them to surrender. The heroic actions of Private RAMIREZ, and his courageous devotion to duty exemplified the highest traditions of the military forces of United States.
Private ERNEST O. JOHNSON, 39333280, Company I, 358th Infantry Regiment, 90th Infantry Division, United States Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against amount enemy. On the night of 6 December 1944, Private Johnson and members of his platoon were clearing the enemy from the town of PACHTEN, GERMANY when they were subjected to fire from a large concrete pillbox which was situated in front of a house. Although in risk of being observed by enemy snipers in the vicinity, Private JOHNSON disregarding his own safety, advanced ahead of the platoon and constructed the only possible approach to the pillbox, by placing an elevated plank from a nearby house to the top of the fortification. After crawling along the plank he dropped two hand grenades down the ventilator and forced the surrender of the occupants. His heroic actions and courageous devotion to duty exemplify the highest traditions of military service.
First Lieutenant HUBERT J. MILLER, 01295925, Infantry, Company I, 358th Infantry regiment, 90th Infantry Division, United States Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against armed enemy. On 12 July 1944 near LA VALAISSERIE, FRANCE while the 3rd Battalion, 358th Infantry was attacking through hedgerows, Lieutenant MILLER, as commanding officer of Company I, was severely and painfully wounded when the Battalion was pinned down by intense enemy machine-gun fire. Learning that all the other officers of Companies I, K, and L had become casualties, Lieutenant. MILLER refused to be evacuated and took command of the reorganization of the three companies under heavy enemy fire. With disregard of his injuries and personal safety, he then moved forward in direct line of fire from the enemy and brought back to safety a severely wounded enlisted man. Lieutenant MILLER remained in command of his troops until relieved by another officer some three hours later. The gallant example set by this officer inspired the troops which he commanded to strive more aggressively for success in all their combat missions.
Second Lieutenant GLENN E. RUGH, 01321952, Infantry, Company I, 358th Infantry, 90th Infantry Division, United States Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy. On 23 November 1944, during an attack against strong enemy positions near TETTINGEN, GERMANY, Lieutenant RUGH assumed command of Company I 358th Infantry when the former commander became a casualty, and fearlessly lead the company through intense fire in a bold bayonet assault on enemy dug-in positions, resulting in the capture of three pillboxes in thirty prisoners. The following day he again distinguished himself by courageously leading another charge against the enemy fortifications, inspiring his men to capture 140 and kill 142 Germans. During this action he was wounded seriously, but refused to be evacuated until he had briefed his second in command on the plans for capturing the town. Lieutenant RUGH's conspicuous bravery, gallant leadership, and heroic devotion to duty exemplify the highest traditions of the military service.
Private First Class THEODORE G. WAGNER, 18103681, 3rd Battalion, 358th Infantry, United States Army, 90th Infantry Division. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy. On 11 July 1944, Private First Class WAGNER'S company was attacking in the densely wooded terrain of the FORET DE MONT CASTRE, FRANCE, when terrific close-range fire was encountered from enemy machine-guns and rifles. This soldier, on his own initiative, worked his way forward scaling a 25-foot rocky hill, in order to reach the enemy strong point from which the fire was coming. At great risk he attained his objective and silenced the enemy guns by throwing several hand grenades into the position. He then forced eight enemy soldiers to surrender to him; nine others were found dead behind the hill. By his courage, gallantry, and intrepid action, Private First Class WAGNER eliminated a serious obstacle in the path of his company's advance.
Private First Class, GEORGE J. CALDWELL, 34767036, Company K, 358th Inf. Rgt., 90th Division, United States Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy. On 19 August 1944, in the vicinity the CHAMBOIS, FRANCE, Private CALDWELL was serving has one member of a two-man rocket launcher team, advancing with elements of the 358th Infantry Regiment against determined enemy resistance. When several enemy tanks approached, the two men moved from position to a position exposed to enemy fire, and calmly held their fire until the enemy came within close range. Expending only five rounds of ammunition, they destroyed four tanks. The heroic actions of Private CALDWELL, and his companion, and their courageous devotion to duty exemplify the highest traditions of military forces of United States.
Captain PHILIP H. CARROLL, 0412189, Co K, 358th Inf. Rgt., 90th Inf. Div., U. S. Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against armed enemy. On July 1944, in the vicinity of LES SABLONS, FRANCE, Company K., 3rd Battalion, 358 Infantry, commanded by Captain PHILIP H. CARROLL, was ordered to attack through lines held by another company to secure strong enemy position. Other attacking troops had twice been thrown back, suffering heavy casualties. Captain CARROLL personally led his company forward, across a deep railroad cut, through intense enemy mortar, machine gun, automatic weapons and artillery fire, fearless exposing himself to the enemy in order to encourage his men. Despite a painful shelf-fragment wound which blinded him in one eye, Captain CARROLL continued his courageous advance inspiring his men to capture the objective, and not until he had assured the defense of the position did he seek medical aid. Even then he walked to the aid station so that another wounded soldier of his company could be evacuated by litter. The conspicuous brave root Captain CARROLL, his outstanding fearless leadership and supreme devotion duty exemplify the highest traditions of the military forces of the United States.
Private First Class, WALTER C. GIEBELSTEIN, 37663847, Company K, 358th Inf. Rgt., 90th Division, U. S. Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy. On 19 August 1944, in the vicinity the CHAMBOIS, FRANCE, Private GIEBELSTEIN was serving as one member of a two-man rocket launcher team, advancing with elements of the 358th Infantry Regiment against determined enemy resistance. When several enemy tanks approached, the two men moved from position to a position exposed to enemy fire, and calmly held their fire until the enemy came within close range. Expending only five rounds of ammunition, they destroyed four tanks. The heroic actions of Private GIEBELSTEIN, and his companion, and their courageous devotion to duty exemplify the highest traditions of military forces of United States.
First Lieutenant WILLIAM J. HENRY, 0461526. Co. K, 358th Inf., 90th Div., U. S. Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy in FRANCE. On July 3 1944, Company K, 3rd Battalion 358th Infantry was attacking south in the vicinity of LES SABLON, FRANCE, when they were stopped by extremely heavy enemy mortar and automatic weapons fire. Lieutenant HENRY, heavy weapons platoon leader, went forward under fire with a sound-powered telephone to adjust the fire of his platoon. As he reached the hedge from which he was to observe he was severely wounded by enemy mortar and small arms fire. Despite these wounds he stayed at his position directing fire, with complete disregard for his own safety, and would not accept evacuation until his mission was accomplished. The conspicuous gallantry of Lieutenant HENRY and his courageous devotion to duty exemplify the highest traditions of the military service of the United States.
Captain ROBERT McHOLLAND, 0433315, Co. K 358 Inf. Rgt., 90th Inf. Div., U. S. Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy. On 23 November 1944, during an attack by the 358th Infantry against strongly fortified enemy positions near TETTINGEN, GERMANY, Captain McHOLLAND, commanding Company K fearlessly lead a group of his men against a concrete machine-gun emplacement, destroyed it with a demolition charge, and forced the occupants to surrender. The following day he again distinguished himself by breaking up a strong enemy attack against his command post. When the enemy force retreated, Captain McHOLLAND and two enlisted men boldly pursued them, killed fourteen of the attackers with hand grenade fire, wounded seven and forced the remaining seventy-eight to surrender. Later, Captain McHOLLAND was fatally wounded while evacuating two wounded men to the safety of a building. His conspicuous heroism, courage and extreme devotion to duty exemplify the highest tradition of the military service.
First Lieutenant MAX SHORT, 0129766, Infantry, Company K, 358th Infantry, 90th Infantry Division. United States Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy. On November 11 1944, the 358th Infantry met intense resistance during an attack against strong enemy positions near KOENIGSMACHER, FRANCE. Lieutenant SHORT, a platoon leader of Company K quickly reorganized his depleted platoon into an effective fighting force and daringly led them through intense fire in a bold assault. When the enemy retreated to prepared positions on the crest of a hill, Lieutenant SHORT and his men followed in pursuit and engaged them in a fierce had-to-hand fight. Lieutenant SHORT killed one of the enemy with his gun butt and another with his trench knife before he fell, mortally wounded. Inspired by his heroic actions the platoon continued on and completely routed the enemy forces, killing and wounding many of them. Lieutenant SHORT'S conspicuous bravery and supreme heroic devotion to duty exemplify the highest tradition of military service.
Private First CLASS HAROLD R. MCQUAY, 35632671, Company K, 358th Infantry Regiment, 90th Infantry Division. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy in GERMANY. On 23rd November 1944, during action near BUTZDORF, GERMANY, when the platoon of which Private McQUAY was a member became separated from the company, he voluntarily braved intense fire to make contact with an adjacent platoon. As he advanced he noticed an enemy machine-gun directing fire against another platoon. With complete disregard for his own safety he boldly assaulted the gun and killed the crew with point blank rifle fire, continued on until he reached the lead squad of the platoon that was his objective and lead it to a position from which it could protect the exposed flank of his platoon. His conspicuous heroism, courageous determination and supreme devotion to duty exemplify the highest traditions of the military service.
Technical Sergeant WILLIAM W. MASTERS, 6285081. Company K, 358th Infantry Regiment, 90th Infantry Division, United States Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy in GERMANY. On 21 March 1945, during an assault against BRETZENHEIM, GERMANY, Sergeant MASTERS' platoon was pinned down by intense enemy machine-gun fire. Accompanied by an Automatic rifleman, Sergeant MASTERS started forward to silence the gun. The rifleman was hit but the intrepid Sargent continued on alone, worming his way forward under a hail of fire. He hurled a hand grenade into the enemy position and killed the gunner, killed the assistant gunner when he attempted to take over the gun and the non-commissioned officer in charge when he tried to rally his men. Leaderless and demoralized by Sergeant MASTERS' heroic action permitted his platoon to advance and seize the town. The fearless determination and courageous devotion to duty exemplify the highest traditions of the service.
Captain CHARLES B. BRYAN, 0390490, Infantry, Company L, 358th Infantry Regiment, 90th Infantry Division. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy in FRANCE. On 10 November 1944, Captain BRYAN fearlessly led his company in a bold assault on a strong enemy position near INGLANGE, FRANCE, inspiring his men by his conspicuous, heroic leadership. Following his example, the company assaulted with bayonets and grenades and killed and captured nearly a hundred of the enemy. On 11 November, Captain BRYAN again distinguished himself by personally leading his company against another strong enemy position, again inspiring his men to take the objective and inflict tremendous losses of men and material upon the enemy. His heroic determination and courageous devotion to duty reflect great credit upon himself and are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service.
Captain JOHN W. MARSH, 0364376, Infantry Company M, 358th Infantry Regiment, United States Army. For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy in FRANCE. On 10 July 1944, Captain MARSH was commanding Company M, 358th Infantry Regiment, advancing against a strong enemy position in the vicinity of the FORET DE MONT CASTRE, FRANCE when the rifle companies of the 3rd Battalion became disorganized and separated in the face of intense enemy fire. Captain MARSH, realizing that many of the officers were replacements with little combat experience, left his heavy weapons company in the control of the second in command and went forward to assist the battalion commander in organizing a hasty defense. With utter disregard of enemy fire coming from the front and both flanks, he led small groups of riflemen forward to close the gaps in the line, boldly directing their fire until the enemy was forced to retire. Before a complete reorganization could be effected, the enemy counter-attacked and again Captain MARSH left his company to proceed to the foremost front line troops to give his assistance. As he directed fire on the enemy he took up arms of the wounded and inspired his men to drive off the enemy. Even after suffering the wounds which resulted in his death he continued to lead his men until he fell, unable to go further. The inspired leadership of Captain MARSH, his courage and complete devotion to duty, exemplify the highest traditions of the Armed Forces of the United States.
24 February, 1945
Under the provisions of Section IV, Circular 333, War Department, 22 December 1943, and pursuant to the authority contained in 4th Endorsement, Headquarters Third United States Army, File AG 200.6 (5 November 1944) GHMCA-4, dated 14 February 1945, the following unit is cited:
The third Battalion, 358th Infantry, is cited for extraordinary heroism in the face of enemy in France. During the period 10 - 12 July 1944, the officers and men of this organization displayed great courage, endurance and dogged determination in the attack through the dense Foret de Mont Castre, France. The position known as the Amahlman Line and was part of the main enemy defensive line. It consisted of dug-in positions, cunningly camouflaged in the tangled underbrush and other devices which utilized, to the fullest, the natural defensive qualities of the area. Despite repeated fierce enemy counterattacks the Battalion relentlessly drove forward and eliminated a battalion of parachute infantry and a company of parachute engineers, both of which were part of the elite 5th German Parachute Division. By the end of the first day the Battalion Commander and 11 of the 17 officers were casualties but the advance had progressed to within 75 yards of the initial objective. The following day the remnants of the three rifle companies, one of which had 20 men, were reorganized into one composite company with a strength of 126 men and commanded by a lieutenant. In a renewed charge the depleted Battalion overran the objective, killed 40 enemy, captured 8 machine guns, bazookas and mortars. On 12 July 1944 as it left the forest the Battalion, retaining its aggressiveness, fought with exceptional daring and great skill and took successive objectives. The Battalion's break through the enemy's main position contributed materially to the Division's advance. The inspiring leadership of its officers and the gallantry displayed by all ranks were in accordance with the highest military tradition.
By command of Major General ROOKS:
ROSTER OF OFFICERS AND MEN
KILLED IN ACTION
1st Lt. James M. Brown... 14 Jun 44
2nd Lt. Louis Dwoskin 13 Jul 44
1st Lt. Gerald N. Faze..... 13 Nov 44
2nd Lt. Edward F. Fink........ 14 Jul 44
1st Lt. Perly B. Hall....... 30 Jun 44
1st Lt. John C. Harris.... 18 Jun 44
1st. Lt. Edward E. Hatch.... 13 Jan 45
2nd Lt. Harold L. Limmer... 9 Sep 44
1st. Lt. William A. Marron. 13 Jan 45
Pfc. Walter J. Adamy. 22 Feb 45
Pfc. Clyde N. Andes.... 14 Jul 44
Pfc. Nocholas J. Asaro.. 22 Mar 45
S/Sgt. J. M. Ashford 2 Aug 44
Pvt. Henry Backward 15 Jun 44
Sgt. Edward C. Bagnoli. 25 Jun 44
T/4 J. L. Bailey. 18 Jun 44
Pfc. Elvis T. Ball.............. 15 Jun 44
S/Sgt. Lewis R. Barlow. 19 Mar 45
Pfc. Robert M. Barylak. 20 Jun 44
Pvt. Harvey T. Bechard... 7 Jul 44
Pfc. William L. Bidwell... 8 Sep 44
Sgt. Lloyd W. Black..... 12 Jun 44
Pfc. Todd O. Blackwell 27 Mar 45
Pfc. Henry J. Blacquiere 21 Mar 45
Pvt. Stephen L. Boddy.... 12 Jul 44
Pvt. Lionel O. Boutin.... 14 Jul 44
Sgt. Truman Brashears 21 Mar 45
T/Sgt. Annil H. Bratvold 15 Jun 44
Pvt. Jimmie L. Brooks.. 16 Jun 44
Pvt. Raymond F. Browning 13 Jul 44
Pvt. George K. Brundage 6 Feb 45
Pfc. Robert B. Bunfill... 11 Jun 44
Sgt. Walter C. Burgess, Jr....... 26 Apr 45
Pfc. Willis S. L. Burkhardt 21 Mar 45
Pvt. Amos H. Busch.... 14 Jul 44
Pfc. Joseph Butler................ 13 Jul 44
Pfc. Edward J. Campbell 12 Jul 44
Pvt. Robert J. Campbell 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Raymond Clank..... 20 Jan 45
Pfc. Lewis H. Clutter.. 14 Jun 44
Pvt. Stroud R. Coleman 14 Feb 45
Pfc. Jasper E. Cox............. 16 Mar 45
Pfc. Keith A. Craner.. 21 Mar 45
Pfc. Willard F. Crisp..... 14 Jun 44
Pfc. Frederick G. Croad.... 16 Jun 44
Pfc. James Cundiff. 13 Jun 44
Pfc. Orville E. Davis... 15 Apr 45
Pfc. Robert L. Duckett 13 Jun 44
Pfc. Charles E. Dunlap... 9 Sep 44
Sgt. Jack Eli 4 Jul 44
Pvt. Angelo Famigletti 14 Nov 44
Sgt. James E. Fisher.. 25 Nov 44
Pfc. Lawrence H. Fletcher. 12 Jul 44
S/Sgt. Willard K. Franklin 16 Dec 44
Pfc. Charles H. G. Frazier. 20 Aug 44
Pfc. Raymond E. Frazier.. 14 Feb 45
S/Sgt. John J. Galvin... 15 Jun 44
Pvt. Emile G. Gathier 11 Nov 44
Pfc. Wendell D. Geiken.... 13 Jul 44
Pvt. George H. Gengler 12 Nov 44
Pfc. Melvin J. Gloozman 15 Apr 45
Pvt. Neil D. Graham. 10 Feb 45
Pfc. Sam O. Graham. 23 Feb 45
Pvt. Robert H. Gray....... 22 Jul 44
Pvt. Robert D. Greenig 10 Feb 45
Pfc. Elmer R. Harkness 14 Jun44
Pfc. Floyd A. Harlow, Jr. 18 Jun 44
Pvt. Claude A. Harrington 27 Jul 44
Pfc. Donald M. Hawthorne 16 Mar 45
Sgt. Jesse R. Henry.. 11 Nov 44
Sgt. Herbert W. Hesson.. 7 Dec 44
Pfc. Sherman J. Hobson. 7 Dec 44
Pvt. Lloyd L. Holthus 10 Feb 45
Pvt. Robert W. Huck....... 1 Feb 45
Pvt. Alma S. Hunt................ 12 Jul 44
Pfc. Thomas D. Israel...... 14 Jul 44
Pfc. David C. Johnson 12 Nov 44
Pvt. Ernest C. Johnson 13 Jan 45
Pfc. Leonard O. Johnson 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Donic Jones................ 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Victor H. Jones.... 27 Jan 45
Pvt. Daniel C. Keefe..... 14 Jul 44
T/Sgt. Clarence R. Keller..... 7 Dec 44
Pvt. Arthur J. Kinner.... 8 Sep 44
Pvt. Ozell J. Kirksey.. 7 Dec 44
Pfc. George L. Klosterman 14 Jun 44
Pfc. William A. Kuffner 24 Apr 45
Pfc. Harry M. Kuhn, Jr... 6 Jul 44
Pvt. Frank Kulenych 29 Jan 45
Pfc. Albert M. Lamb, Jr. 6 Dec 44
Cpl. Carlton C. Lane...... 11 Jun 44
Pfc. Jesse C. Lanier.. 16 Mar 45
S/Sgt. Selmer I. Larson..... 3 Jul 44
S/Sgt. Jack V. Lauder. 11 Dec 44
Pfc. Lionel H. Leblanc.. 26 Jul 44
Pfc. Dalton W. Luck..... 16 Mar 45
Pvt. Clayton A. Maeyens 8 Sep 44
Pvt. Gilbert Malkin.. 10 Feb 45
S/Sgt. Alfonso E. Martinez 10 Sep 44
Cpl. Anthony M. Mashintonio.... 11 Feb 45
Pvt. J. D. Mayo 14 Jul 44
Sgt. Paul F. McAnally 16 Mar 45
Pvt. William E. McDaniel 14 Jul 44
T/5 George F. McFarland 30 Apr 45
T/5 Harold A. McGuire 10 Feb 45
T/Sgt. Patrick Murphy... 2 Jul 44
Pfc. Lloyd E. Muse....... 6 Jul 44
Pvt. James P. Nails....... 14 Jul 44
S/Sgt. James V. Naul....... 13 Jul 44
Pfc. Jerry P. Nemac.... 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Harry F. Oliphant 21 Mar 45
Pfc. Clarence E. Peterson.. 7 Jul 44
Pfc. Jack Phipps.............. 22 Feb 45
Pvt. Emerson L. Pickering. 4 Jul 44
S/Sgt. Joseph H. Plunkett. 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Henry C. Poillion, Jr. 6 Dec 44
Pvt. Harold E. Price....... 14 Jul 44
Sgt. Robert E. Price..... 22 Feb 45
Pvt. Otis B. Purvis...... 7 Jul 44
S/Sgt. Francisco Rivera... 10 Feb 45
Pfc. George A. Robshaw 9 Sep 44
Pfc. Jose R. Rodriguez 13 Jan 45
Pvt. Joseph Roesch, Jr. 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Morris S. Seckler... 12 Jul 44
Pfc. Ezekial Shank................ 2 Feb 45
Pvt. David M. Silva..... 10 Feb 45
Pfc. Bernard F. Snith..... 17 Jan 45
Pfc. Roland E. Smith........ 4 Jul 44
Pfc. William H. Smith...... 7 Sep 44
Pvt. Frank P. Sroczynski 13 Jan 45
Sgt. Leon C. Sroczynski 11 Nov 44
Pvt. Lewis Stacy................ 23 Jul 44
Pvt. Thomas V. Stalter.. 12 Nov 44
Pvt. Frank M. Stampahar 21 Jul 44
Pvt. George Steinleitner 12 Jul 44
T/Sgt. Ralph E. Stockdale 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Alonzo G. Strickland 11 Jul 44
Pfc. George E. Sund..... 16 Jun 44
S/Sgt. Peter V. Szady....... 7 Jul 44
S/Sgt. Lee A. Tapley. 16 Mar 45
Cpl. Tony M. Terlep.... 11 Jul 44
Pvt. Merle J. Trotter.. 10 Feb 45
Sgt. Oliver J. Turner, Jr. 13 Jul 44
S/Sgt. Stephen P. Usinskas 16 Mar 45
Pfc. Lonnie W. Wade.. 20 Aug 44
Sgt. Jake Wagner................ 2 Apr 45
Pfc. Boyd R. Waite..... 12 Jul 44
Pfc. Nathan A. Wellisch 27 Apr 45
Sgt. Ezra White 13 Jan 45
Pvt. John D. Williams 15 Jun 44
Pfc. Von C. Wilson. 10 Jun 44
Pfc. Clifford H. Wold ... 15 Jun 44
T/Sgt. A. D. Woods.... 6 Jul 44
1st. James B. Boese..... 7 Feb 45
Capt. Robert B. McHolland....... 24 Nov 44
1st. Max Short. 11 Nov 44
2nd Lt. Sheldon S. Wilcox 28 Jun 44
Pfc. Edward L. Allen...... 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Clifford J. Aikens... 13 Jul 44
Pfc. Verl Anderson 3 Jul 44
Pvt. Alvin W. Butler.... 4 May 45
T/5 Robert F. Burns... 27 Mar 45
S/Sgt. Ralph A. Butori... 12 Jun 44
Pvt. Elmer C. Bradly, Jr 2 Oct 44
S/Sgt. Thomas G. Belus...... 14 Jul 44
Cpl. Charles W. Campbell, Jr..... 27 Apr 45
T/5 John R. Caruso.... 1 Feb45
Pfc. Lawrence P. Christensen 6 Mar 45
Sgt. Melvin O. Cooper 20 Aug 44
Pvt. Rexford A. Cline....... 13 Jul 44
Pfc. James J. Duck.... 24 Nov 44
Sgt. Paul R. Dowds.. 15 Jan 45
Pfc. Joseph A. Derlicharz 8 Aug 44
Pfc. Samuel J. DeLorenzo 14 Nov 44
Sgt. Hester P. Daniels 15 Nov 44
Pfc. Ewing Dobish 14 Nov 44
T/Sgt. John M. Delaney 14 Nov 44
Pvt. Donald R. Duffy..... 13 Jul 44
Pfc. Charles W. Dowlin 15 Aug 44
Pvt. George Dyer................ 22 Jul 44
Pfc. Arthur J. Duggins 20 Jul 44
Pfc. William G. Dye........ 14 Jul 44
T/Sgt. William H. Duncan.. 8 Sep 44
Pvt. Benito Elias 7 Jul 44
Pfc. Charlton L. Fisher..... 2 Feb 45
Pvt. Junior L. Flowers 13 Nov 44
Pfc. Ray K. Foreman 13 Nov 44
Pvt. Frances W. Frazier.... 16 Jul 44
Pvt. Casper Fasano... 19 Jul 44
Pvt. John T. Fuqua.... 23 Jul 44
Pvt. Edgar T. Flick...... 12 Jun 44
Pfc. Cleatus F. Finley... 17 Jun 44
Pvt. Theodore A. Grudzinski 24 Apr 45
Pvt. Homer C. Geist.... 16 Nov 44
Pfc. Edward J. Gabriele 8 Aug 44
Pfc. John T. Geddings 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Edmond C. Goodey.. 13 Jul 44
Pfc. Pedro V. Garcia....... 4 Jul 44
T/5 Clarence L. Goodman 15 Jun 44
Pvt. Martin E. Holder.. 24 Apr 45
Pfc. Floyd G. Hightower 15 Jan 45
Pfc. Morley S. Horwitz. 15 Jan 45
S/Sgt. Earl Hinton.............. 15 Jun 44
S/Sgt. Gerald P. Holdsworth...... 13 Nov 44
Pvt. Corley M. Harrison 12 Jun 44
Pvt. John L. Hertter... 23 Jul 44
Pfc. Ola F. Hicks................ 13 Jul 44
Pvt. William M. Hildreth. 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Edward L. Hines....... 3 Jul 44
Pvt. Robert G. Hewes...... 7 Jul 44
Pvt. Mike J. Holly................ 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Burman G. Jones.... 13 Jan 45
Pvt. John T. Jurkiewicz 14 Jul 44
Pfc. Robert H. Klassen 15 Jan 45
S/Sgt. Ernest C. Kennedy 15 Nov 44
Pvt. Donald Keller..... 13 Jul 44
Pvt. William F. Kellecher 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Wilbur P. Leighton 22 Mar 45
Pvt. David I. Lowry...... 9 Jul 44
Pfc. Jose C. Luera.................. 3 Jul 44
Pvt. Joseph Lominsky 3 Jul 44
Pfc. Sam H. Lowe.............. 16 Jun 44
T/Sgt. William W. Masters 14 Apr 45
T/5 Carl M. McLaughlin..... 10 Feb 45
Pvt. Jesse C. Mullens. 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Ismael S. Molina.. 15 Jan 45
Pfc. Charles A. Michaels 14 Nov 44
Pfc. Robert S. Mapes... 14 Jul 44
Sgt. Domingo Montoya, Jr. 7 Jul 44
Pfc. Leopoldo Morales. 14 Jul 44
Sgt. Cecil H. Maddox... 6 Jul 44
Pfc. Le Roy A. Maas........ 4 Jul 44
Sgt. Gerhand P. Moen.... 11 Jun 44
T/4 Bennie M. Norberg 15 Jan 45
S/Sgt. Malcom B. Nelson..... 7 Jul 44
Pfc. William R. Newberry 11 Jun 44
Pfc. Joseph A. Orlikowski 3 Apr 45
Pvt. Eugene H Ott................ 14 Jul 44
Sgt. Gerhard S. Omoth.... 14 Jul 44
S/Sgt. Van L. Payne... 10 Sep 44
Pvt. James C. Pennington 9 Feb 45
Cpl. Clyde M. Potter..... 2 Apr 45
Pfc. Joseph A. Paolillo 12 Nov 44
S/Sgt. Hobert B. Pierce.. 12 Nov 44
Pfc. Robert O. Pullman, Jr........ 16 Nov 44
Pfc. George E. Pissanos 17 Jul 44
Sgt. John Potter................ 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Nichalos A. Piccone.. 14 Jul 44
Pfc. John J. Prorok.... 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Lee L. Priller................ 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Calvin C. Postma..... 3 Jul 44
Pfc. Philip C. Rocker. 30 Apr 45
Pfc. John F. Ratka............. 21 Mar 45
Sgt. LeRov A. Rowe.... 24 Apr 45
Pvt. Ramiro Rodriguez 14 Jan 45
Pvt. Glendon J. Reese.. 14 Nov 44
Pvt. Serviliano Rivera...... 3 Jul 44
Pvt. Edwin B. Rhea....... 26 Jul 44
Pvt. Arnold J. Rinzema... 1 Jul 44
Pvt. Gabriel G. Resnick.. 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Ezra P. Roe 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Edward T. Rasch..... 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Russell Richardson 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Walter F. Roeber... 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Samuel T. Salvaggi 29 Jan 45
Pvt. Alvin J. Sandsness 29 Jan 45
Pfc. Howard W. Shreck.. 18 Feb 45
Pvt. Calvin S. Shumaker 29 Jan 45
Pfc. Leroy W. Simmons 14 Nov 44
Pfc. Leonard M. Smestad... 7 Jul 44
Pvt. Henry P. Schmidt... 3 Jul 44
Pfc. Arnold E. Siegel.... 12 Jun 44
Pfc. August C. Siegfried 16 Jun 44
Pfc. Robert T. Taylor... 14 Jun 44
Pvt. Fred Triplett............. 13 Nov 44
Pvt. Glen W. Uehling. 15 Jan 45
Pfc. Harold B. Vail............... 29 Jan 45
Pfc. Joseph Viola............... 15 Jan 45
Pvt. Archie V. Vaughn. 15 Jan 45
Pfc. James N. Van Dyke.... 15 Nov 44
Pfc. Edward S. Wagner.. 4 Feb 45
Pfc. Raymond E. Walcott 10 Feb 45
Pvt. John M. Wigley.. 13 Jan 45
Pfc. Rupert G. Winiger 13 Nov 44
Pvt. Lee W. Wilson... 18 Jul 44
S/Sgt. George L. Young.. 30 Apr 45
1/Sgt. Robert M. Yann....... 4 Feb 45
Pvt. Alvin H. Zynda..... 3 Oct 44
1st Lt. Roderick A. Bacon 16 Nov 44
1st Lt. Donald W. Ringler... 22 Jul 44
2nd Lt. Paul L. Smith... 13 Nov 44
Pfc. Arnold Adams. 16 Dec 44
Pfc. Able G. Amavisca 15 Jan 45
1/Sgt. Sijmund J. Bargaleski 9 Jul 44
S/Sgt. Carl H. Becherer 10 Jun 44
Pfc. Gussie Begay.............. 12 Jun 44
Pfc. Charles N. Bess....... 26 Jul 44
Pfc. Lee G. Bortz............... 15 Jan 45
Pfc. Theodore B. Brandford 15 Jan 45
S/Sgt. Oval H. Brewer 19 Aug 44
Sgt. Raymond E. Bringle. 30 Sep 44
Pvt. Edward J. Burke... 10 Nov 44
Pvt. Jessie N. Burkhalter 11 Jun 44
Pfc. Harold E. Carnahan 15 Jun 44
Pvt. Clayton R. Caron..... 13 Jul 44
T/Sgt. William C. Causey... 1 Feb 45
Pfc. William L. Chism... 14 Jun 44
Pvt. George Chunderlik 16 Jun 44
Pfc. Francis W. Cline..... 11 Jun 44
Pvt. Woodrow W. Coghill 18 Jun 44
Sgt. Pete Cortese.............. 10 Feb 45
Pfc. Harold V. Cox............. 14 Nov 44
Pfc. Charles C. Cracraft 12 Jun 44
Pvt. Anton F. Czapiga 17 Jun 44
Pfc. Enrico C. D'Antonio...... 20 Aug 44
Pvt. Arthur Davidson 16 Jun 44
Pfc. Lee A. Denbow... 4 Jul 44
Pfc. Quinton Doran... 16 Jun 44
Pvt. Willie W. Dorton.... 8 Jan 45
Pfc. Harry D. Dougherty 7 Sep 44
Pvt. Harold N. Draper.. 27 Jun 44
S/Sgt. Kenneth Erickson 14 Jun 44
Sgt. Clifford A. Evenson 12 Jun 44
S/Sgt. Frederick H. Farmer. 7 Jul 44
Pfc. Samuel J. Florchack 12 Jun 44
Pvt. Lou W. French.. 16 Jun 44
S/Sgt. Truitt I. Gilbreath.. 4 Jul 44
Pvt. Arturo Gonzalez 22 Jan 45
Sgt. James W. Hamm.... 15 Jan 45
T/5 Robert Y. K. Han....... 19 Feb 45
T/Sgt. John M. Hassell. 10 Jun 44
T/Sgt. Kello F. Hawkins 14 Jul 44
Pfc. Jay H. Hemminger 12 Jun 44
Pvt. Curtis Henderson....... 10 Nov 44
Pfc. Clyde L. Hetrick 14 Nov 44
Pfc. John F. Hoffman 22 Jul 44
Pvt. Arthur D. Hostetler 14 Jul 44
S/Sgt. Alton R. Hughes 12 Jun 44
Pvt. Helmer W. Jackson 16 Mar 45
Pvt. Harley P. Johnson 11 Jul 44
Pvt. Albert H. Kassekert 14 Jun 44
Pvt. James G. Knapp.. 15 Jun 44
Pvt. Thomas A. Knight.. 12 Jun 44
Pvt. James A. Lewis..... 12 Jul 44
Pvt. O. B. Littleton. 14 Jul 44
Pfc. Hiram L. Lucy....... 7 Sep 44
S/Sgt. John C. Luger, Jr. 7 Dec 44
Pvt. Harold T. Luscher. 12 Jul 44
Pfc. Floyd M. Lynch.... 14 Jul 44
Pfc. Lorenzo M. Maldonado 10 Jun 44
S/Sgt. Paul F. Martz... 13 Nov 44
Pfc. Ernest B. Mathews 23 Jul 44
Pfc. Lyle S. McCoy.. 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Robert P. McNamara 7 Jul 44
Pfc. James L. Mercurio 11 Jun 44
Pvt. Virgil Neibaur.. 14 Jul 44
Pfc. Elbert R. Nelson, Jr. 16 Jun 44
Pvt. Allen L. Oakley... 14 Jul 44
Pfc. William C. Parker... 11 Jun 44
Pfc. Allfred A. Petesch.. 14 Jul 44
T/Sgt. Antonio G. Pinelli... 16 Dec 44
Pfc. Anthony G. Pollis... 14 Nov 44
Pvt. Elmer F. Poore..... 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Bruno S. Schipani 12 Jul 44
Pfc. Ramon N. Sedillo.... 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Owen H. Sheehy 18 Nov 44
Pvt. John J. Sitko................ 14 Jul 44
Pfc. Harold G. Skelly.. 14 Nov 44
Pvt. Harold W. Snead.. 21 Mar 45
Sgt. Frank A. Staudt... 13 Jan 45
Pfc. Jay W. Stober.. 22 Mar 45
Pvt. Cyril T. Toenyes 11 Jun 44
Pfc. Henry F. Wawrowski...... 22 Mar 45
Pfc. Wilbur B. Weide.... 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Burl H. Weishuhn 1 Feb 45
Pvt. Sherwood R. Williams. 1 Feb 45
Pfc. Vernon B. Wolfe..... 7 Sep 44
Pfc. John S. Wood, Jr. 14 Nov 44
Pvt. William A. Woolwine 12 Jan 45
Pfc. Michael Wysco 13 Nov 44
Pvt. Francis X. Zweir..... 15 Jan 45
Capt. John W. Marsh.... 10 Jul 44
1st. Lt. Burwell B. McCaa.. 9 Aug 44
1st Lt. Robert S.Smith.. 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Otto W. Applegate 20 Aug 44
Pfc. Rudolph L. Barta..... 16 Jun 44
Pvt. Edward J. Cahill...... 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Frederick E. Collins.. 31 Jan 45
Pvt. Sam A. Crisciullo 23 Jul 44
Pfc. Philip C. Dodds. 24 Nov 44
Pfc. Milford G. Fagerstrom 13 Jul 44
Pvt. Talmadge W. Floyd...... 9 Feb 45
Sgt. Lester J. Glor.............. 25 Apr 45
Pfc. Earl C. Hagerman 2 Jul 44
Pfc. Elmer E. Hartwell 14 Jun 44
Cpl. Harry C. Heavens 12 Nov 44
Pvt. Edward D. Hovencamp..... 24 Nov 44
Pvt. Arnold Jackson... 6 Jul 44
Pvt. Andrew W. Konitzer. 12 Jul 44
Pfc. Con L. Kroleski 15 Jun 44
S/Sgt. Raymond J. Krolick 15 Jun 44
Pfc. Otto J. Kutach. 22 Jun 44
Pfc. Fred Luna. 13 Jul 44
T/5 Frank E. Manning 12 Jul 44
Pfc. Arthur A. Mathabel 9 Feb 45
Pvt. George O. Maxwell 24 Nov 44
S/Sgt. Elmer L. Morrow 11 Jun 44
Pvt. Frank Music.................. 4 Jul 44
Pfc. Leo J. Oberbroekling. 12 Sep 44
Pvt. George T. Osborne 10 Nov 44
T/5 Felix A. Rainosek 13 Jul 44
T/Sgt. Herbert E. Roeglin. 13 Jan 45
T/Sgt. Oliver Z. Rogers.. 15 Jun 44
Pvt. Joseph P. Rowbottom 15 Jan 45
Pfc. Walter H. Sanderson 14 Jul 44
Sgt. Edmund K. Secord. 12 Nov 44
1/Sgt. Maxwell Stage... 16 Aug 44
Pfc. Francis M. Stull....... 9 Nov 44
Sgt. Carl A. Toy, Jr............ 13 Jan 45
Sgt. Frank J. Turek..... 14 Jul 44
Pvt. Guy J. Wooderson..... 12 Jun 44
Pfc. Theodore E. Zoch.... 12 Nov 44
Pfc. Arthur F. Gerhardt 16 Jun 44
HEADQUARTERS & HEADQUARTERS COMPANY
1st Lt. Robert T. Isenberg 27 Jul 44
Pfc Henry A. Jackiewicz. 14 Jun 44
S/Sgt. Edwin M. Larson.. 14 Jun 44
Pfc. Joseph A. Longo... 14 Jun 44
Pfc. Joe M. Martinez 16 Mar 45
T/4 Donald S. McNiel. 25 Feb 45
T/5 Harold N. Morgan 14 Jun 44
Pvt. Marvin S. O'Connor 16 Jun 44
T/5 Rino J. Pelligrini.. 8 Jul 44
Pfc. Eduardo F. Ramirez 22 Feb 45
T/4 Everett S. Stallings, Jr. 27 Jul 44
ATTACHED MEDICAL PERSONNEL
Pfc. Joseph Bodi 3 Jul 44
T/5 Victor Chernivisky..... 31 Jan 45
T/5 Joseph Coprich.. 11 Jul 44
Pfc. Robert Funner.. 15 Jan 45
Pfc. Robert Hogan... 17 Jan 45
T/4 Glenn Huddleston 6 Dec 44
Pfc. Leonard Omen.... 15 Jun 44
T/5 William E. Rector... 15 Jun 44
Pvt. Kenneth Shoup... 15 Jan 45
T/4 Joseph Simkewicz 17 Jun 44
T/5 Charles Thompson 3 Jul 44
T/5 William E. Williams 15 Nov 44
8 JUNE 1944 TO V-E DAY 1845
COMPANY/ OFFICERS/ ENLISTED MEN
I 56 527
K 46 594
L 43 677
M 35 405
Headquarters 34 167