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Battle Babies now Combat Veterans

In 99 days, the 99th Division had learned much, done plenty. It was a green outfit when the last iron-spiked thrust of the Wehrmacht caught it smartly on the chin in Belgium. But even after von Rundstedt’s panzers were blasted, the world still wondered when the big crackup would come—the fatal blow to Nazi might…

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Checkerboarders span the Rhine

Since the fall of Aachen, there had been no impressive gains on the Western Front. Soldiers under Gen. Hodges sensed that First Army was winding up for a Sunday punch, but there was no assurance that it would smash open the West Wall or that Germany would not defend every inch of ground, as Goebbels…

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The 99th Drives on the Fatherland

After the fury of the first week of the breakthrough, men of the 99th hugged their snow-filled foxholes in the open land before Elsenborn, repulsing weakening German thrusts until the division switched to the offensive in late January. Col. Robert B. Warren, Windom, Minn., joined the division as chief of staff. Limited patrolling, then more…

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Green Troops build stone Wall

But what was happening didn’t make sense to the Germans. They slugged this green division unmercifully, yet it still jabbed back. Cut off and surrounded in part, these newcomers to battle were fighting like veterans. The going was bitter, but the division began regaining ground. By Sunday night, Dec. 17, Germans were using every trick in…

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December 16 , 1944

Dec. 16, 1944: All hell broke loose! With lightning speed and savage fury, von Rundstedt’s forces rolled forward on the heels of a pulverizing artillery barrage. Using tanks and infantry in battalion spearheads, the fanatic Wehrmacht hurled its full force against the entire arc of the 99th Div. front. Outposts and front-line companies reeled under…

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99 days with the fighting 99th

As part of V Corps, the 99th was alerted for the attack Dec. 12, 1944, and doughs moved out at 0830 the following morning. In deep snow, 1st and 2nd Bns., 395th, and 2nd and 3rd Bns., 393rd, swung northeast to seize objectives in the outer belt of the Siegfried Line. These new positions were…

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Activation

The 99th Inf. Div. was activated Nov 16, 1942, at Camp Van Dorn, Miss., and when raw recruits arrived in early December, the picture they viewed was far from rosey. Camp Van Dorn, hastily built as the Army mushroomed in every direction, was a tar paper shanty town sprawled across the red mud of southern…

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The Story of the 99th Infantry Division

LIEGE by Christmas, Brussels by New Year’s” was Field Marshal Gerd von Rundstedt’s promise to his soldiers. But his operation backfired. Battle Babies—the men of the 99th Infantry Division—know why. For two days, Dec. 16 and 17, 1944, doughs of the 99th stood alone at a hot corner of the Battle of the Bulge—in front…

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Delbert A. Sayre

Delbert A. Sayre HQ Co. 1st Bn 395th Infantry Regiment Delbert Austin Sayre ( 03-06-1920 – 21-03-2010) born in Smithville, OH on July 3rd 1920. A member of Hq Company, 1st battalion 395th. Delbert entered into active service the 29th of June 1942 in Fort Hayes, Ohio, as part of the 5th Service Command. The…

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Army Specialized Training Program

The Army Specialized Training Program (“ASTP”) was established by the United States Army in December 1942 to identify, train and educate academically-talented enlisted men as a specialized corp of Army officers during World War II. Utilizing major colleges and universities across the country, the Army provided a four-year college education combined with specialized Army technical…

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