Two Sherman M-4A1 of the 2nd Armored Division, July 26 1944, St Jean de Daye, France (US Army)
When the German offensive struck the Ardennes on December 16, 1944, the 2nd Armored Division was 70 miles away to the north near Baesweiller, Germany, as part of the Ninth Army. It had engaged in several weeks of heavy offensive fighting to reach the Roer River. Then, during the four weeks prior to Dec 16, the division had a dual mission. It held a defensive sector of the XIX Corps sector with a small force while the remainder of the command was held in Corps reserve. During this month of reserve status, 17 replacement officers and 464 enlisted men were integrated into the fighting teams. All units had conducted maintenance and training along with rest and rehabilitation. Current thought among commanders had resulted in the reorganization of one regiment (86th Armored) on Dec 15. This regiment kept the three battalion organization but made one into a reconnaissance and security battalion composed of a reconnaissance company and a light tank company. The two assault battalions each contained one light tank company and three medium tank companies. The organization of the 67th Armored Regiment remained unchanged with its light tank battalion and two medium tank battalions. Thus the status of the division is viewed as the German attack began.