Report : Employment of 4 TD Bns in the ETO
Officers Advanced Course – Armored School
628th Tank Destroyer Battalion (Self Propelled)
Maj William F. Jackson, Maj John E. Wales III, Maj Marshall B. Garth, Maj John A. Rankin, Maj Alfred L. Dibelia, Maj Robert Hall, Capt George F. Sawyer, Capt Robert L. Perley, Capt James L. Higgins
Preparing a research report on tank destroyers proved to be a more interesting task than most members of the Committee anticipated. The announcement of the subject cast some doubt upon the worth of a report on a now obsolete weapon of war, but not for long. The splendid achievements of tank destroyer units in action, the outstanding esprit of officers and men in these units under all conditions of combat, and the ingenuity and bravery they combined to stop the most feared menace of the battlefield in World War II created admiration for them and professional interest in their methods. It is hoped that this report adequately describes the courage and tenacity with which they fought and the skillful techniques they employed in outmaneuvering and outfighting their armored foe.
Early, I have published the work of Maj Watanabe about the Lost Battalion in the Vosges Mountains in France in October 1944. I found out that the AJAs did a hell of a job. There is just a wrong word used in this entire story : saved ! The 1st Bn, 141st Infantry Regiment, 36th Infantry Division Texas wasn’t saved because it was just relieved from it’s positions in the Trapin de Saules.
35th Infantry Division Troops and Wrecked Flakpanzer 38(t), Tessy Sur Vire, France, 1944
Report of Action Against the Enemy, 137th Infantry Regiment, 35th Infantry Division
(1) In compliance with the provisions of Par 10 C3 AR 345-105, submitted below is report after action against the enemy for the 137th Infantry covering the period 1-31 October 1944.
October 1 1944
On the morning of Oct 1 1944, the 137-IR was opposed by strong German forces from a point midway between Pettoncourt and Chambrey on the Seille River northward to the edge of the Gremecey Forest. Northeast through the Gremecey Forest the 1st and 3rd Battalions of the 320-IR (35-ID) were in position, tying in with the 134-IR southeast of Fresnes. The 134th line extended west to Manhoue. Beyond them, across the Seille, was the 80-ID. On our right, the 4-AD was operating south of the Nancy – Saarbrucken Highway. The 133rd Engineers Combat Battalion remained in defensive position in our own sector, after being moved to the ridge east and south of Gremecey the previous day in repulsing the furious German attack in the direction of that town. Elements of the 6-AD had moved up from Corps reserve near Nancy, and went into an assembly area to the rear of the 137-IR, in preparation for a coordinated attack on the morning of Oct 1. Task Force Harris (6-AD) had the mission of attacking east from the vicinity of Pettoncourt to the line Chambrey – Bois de Chambrey.
After the landing in Normandy, followed by some weeks later with the landing in the Provence (South France), the US Army Air Force started to move ahead it’s Airfields to reduce the fly distances between the bombing targets assigned in France, Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany and the home’s Airfields in the UK. This started with the North part of France on Jun 7 1944 then in the South part when the troops landed on the beaches.
I have got this archives from a friend in the USA. I am not an expert into Army Air Force codes and abbreviations but I’ll do my best as usual.
Ball Turret Gunner Lyndon C. Allen
Eighth Army Air Force
MacDill Field, Fla, 15 Jan 1941
Barksdale Field, La, Feb 1942
Will Rogers Field, Okla, Jul/Aug 1942
Shipham, UK, Oct-1942 Jun-1945
Sioux Falls AA Fld, SD, 27 Jun 1945
Great Bend AA Fld, Kan, 25 Jul 1945
Smoky Hill AA Fld, Kan, 14 Dec 1945/12 Jul 1946
Constituted as 44th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on Nov 20 1940, the Group was activated on Jan 15 1941 and was trained with B-24’s. The 44-BGH became an operational training unit in Feb 1942 and in Jul, began intensive preparations for combat until moved to England, Aug-Oct 1942, for service with Eighth Air Force. Operations consisted primarily of assaults against strategic targets in France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Romania, Austria, Poland, and Sicily. The bombers pounded particularly submarine installations, industrial establishments, airfields, harbors, shipyards, and other objectives in France and Germany during the period Nov 1942 to Jun 1943. (Source : US 8-AAF)
B-24 Bomber Diamond Lil (Source : warbirdsnews.com)