8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945

0
176

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge BaseThe 8th Infantry Division, was an infantry division of the United States Army during World War Two. The division served in World War I, World War II. Initially activated in January 1918, the unit did not see combat during World War I and returned to the USA. Activated again on July 1 1940 as part of the build-up of military forces prior to the US’s entry into World War II. The division saw extensive action in the ETO. Following World War II, the division was moved to West Germany, where it remained stationed at the Rose Barracks in Bad Kreuznach until it was inactivated on 17 January 1992.

The 8th Division was activated during the month of January 1918. Gen William S. Graves, his staff, 5000 men, and 100 officers were transferred to Siberia in August 1918. Maj Gen Eli A. Helmick succeeded Graves in command of the division. The overseas movement of the division to Europe began on October 30 1918. The 8th Field Artillery Brigade, 8th Infantry Regiment, 16th Infantry Brigade headquarters, and the 319th Engineer Regiment were the only divisional units to go to France. The 13th and 62nd Infantry Regiments were at sea when recalled after the Armistice, and the 12th Infantry did not leave its pre-embarkation point at Camp Mills, New York, because it was quarantined for Spanish influenza. The troops who did reach France became the garrison of Brest and assisted in building huge camps for troops about to embark for return to the USA.

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge BaseThe 8th Infantry Regiment became part of the American occupation forces in Germany until August 1919 and the remainder returned to the US in January 1919, after which the division disbanded. The 8th Division officially demobilized at Camp Lee, Virginia, in September 1919. Partially reconstituted on March 24 1923, the outfit was allotted to the Third Corps Area for mobilization purposes, assigned to the III Corps and sent to Camp George G. Meade, Maryland.

The 16th Infantry Brigade (12th and 34th Infantry Regiments), the 1st Battalion, 16th Field Artillery Regiment, the 15th Ordnance Company, and the 8th Tank Company (Light) were assigned to the division and, as Regular Army Active Units, formed the force from which the remainder of the division would be reactivated in the event of war.

The commanding general of the brigade was considered the division commander for planning purposes. The 16th Infantry Brigade was stationed at Fort Howard, Maryland, from 1922 to 1928; Fort Hunt, Virginia, from 1928 to 1931; in Washington, D.C., from 1931 to 1936; and at Fort Meade from 1936 to the activation of the division.

The division headquarters was organized in April 1926 at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as a Regular Army Inactive Unit using personnel of the Organized Reserve. The active units of the division conducted annual training with the III and XIII Corps and the 79th, 80th, and 99th Divisions. Summer training camps were usually conducted at Camp Meade.

The 16th Infantry Brigade’s regiments, reinforced by the 3rd Cavalry and the District of Columbia National Guard’s 260th Coast Artillery, were called out on July 28 1932 to quell potential trouble from the Bonus Army in Washington, D.C. The 12th Infantry was ordered to clear the United States Capitol and the camps on the Anacostia Flats of the veterans that afternoon.

The division was also provisionally organized in 1939 for the First Army Maneuvers at Manassas, Virginia, with the 16th Brigade reinforced by the 66th Infantry (Light Tanks). In preparation for becoming a triangular division, the 8th Division was reactivated on July 1 1940 at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, without its Reserve units and assigned to the I Corps.

Renamed 8th Infantry Division, the unit trained at Camp Laguna in California in and was sent overseas (Ireland) on December 5 1943.

After training in Ireland the 8th Infantry Division landed on Utah Beach, Normandy, on July 4 1944, and entered combat on July 7.

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge BaseCasualties
, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base

Killed in Action : 2239
Wounded in Action : 10370
Missing in Action : 514
Captured : 335
Battle Casualties : 13458
Non-Battle Casualties : 7598
Total Casualties : 21056

Commanding General
Maj Gen William C. McMahon, December 15 1943
Brig Gen Donald A. Stroh, July 12 1944
Maj Gen Donald A. Stroh, August 30 1944
Brig Gen W. G. Weaver, November 28 1944
Brig Gen James A. Pickering (Acting), January 8 1945
Brig Gen W. G. Weaver, January 14 1945
Maj Gen W. G. Weaver, February 4 1945
Brig Gen Bryant E. Moore, February 25 1945

Assistant Division Commander
Brig Gen Nelson M. Walker, February 15 1944
Col Cyrus H. Searcy, July 12 1944
Col Charles D. W. Canham, July 26 1944
Brig Gen Charles D. W. Canham, September 1 1944

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge BaseArtillery Commander
Brig Gen James A. Pickering, December 15 1943

Chief of Staff
Col Thomas J. Cross, February 15 1944
Lt Col Thomas B. Whitted Jr, November 27 1944
Col Thomas B. Whitted Jr, February 9 1945
Lt Col Joseph K. Gibson, March 22 1945

G-1
Maj Edwin W. Grenelle, February 1 1944
Lt Col Edwin W. Grenelle, March 31 1944

G-2
Lt Col Joseph K. Gibson, December 15 1943
Maj Laban G. Lively, March 22 1945
Lt Col Laban G. Lively, May 1 1945

G-3
Lt Col Thomas H. Beck, February 16 1944
Lt Col Fielder P. Greer, April 1 1945

G-4
Lt Col Thomas B. Whitted Jr, February 15 1944
Maj Jacob Shacter, November 27 1944
Lt Col Jacob Shacter, December 20 1944

G-5
Maj Richard G. Croft, May 13 1944
Lt Col Richard G. Croft, November 6 1944 , 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base
Maj Lester A. Ahroon, April 16 1945

Adjutant General
Lt Col James D. C. Breckinridge, February 15 1944
Maj Marion Cromartie, February 3 1945

CO – 13th Infantry Regiment
Col Robert A. Griffin, July 8 1944
Lt Col Earle L. Lerette, November 25 1944
Col Numa A. Watson, December 1 1944

CO – 28th Infantry Regiment
Col Lester A. Webb, July 8 1944
Lt Col Henry B. Kunzig (Acting), July 9 1944
Col Kenneth E. Anderson, July 14 1944
Col Merrith E. Olmstead, August 31 1944
Col Thomas H. Beck, March 4 1945

CO – 121st Infantry Regiment
Col Albert H. Peyton, July 8 1944
Col John R. Jeter, July 9 1944
Col T. J. Cross, November 25 1944
Lt Col Earl L. Lerette, March 22 1945

Statistics
Activated – July 1 1940
Arrived ETO – December 15 1943
Arrived Continent (D 28) – July 4 1944
Entered Combat – First Elements – July 4 1944
Entered Combat – Entire Division – July 8 1944
Days in Combat – 266

Campaigns
Normandy
Northern France
Rhineland
Central Europe

Awards
Distinguished Service Cross – 32
Legion of Merit – 11 , 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base
Silver Star – 709
Soldiers Medal – 30
Bronze Star – 2287
Air Medal – 106
POWs Taken – 316.187

Order of Battle – 1944/1945
Hq & Hq Company, 8th Infantry Division
13th Infantry Regiment
28th Infantry Regiment
121st Infantry Regiment
8th Recon Troop (Mecz)
12th Engineer Combat Battalion
8th Medical Battalion
Hq Battery, 8th Infantry Division Artillery
43rd Field Artillery Battalion (105-MM HOW)
45th Field Artillery Battalion (105-MM HOW)
56th Field Artillery Battalion (105-MM HOW)
28th Field Artillery Battalion (155-MM HOW)
Special Troops
708th Ordnance Light Maintenance Company
8th Quartermaster Company
8th Signal Company
Military Police Platoon
Band

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base

Attachments – 8th Infantry Division
Antiaircraft Artillery
445th AAA-AW Bn (Mbl) – July 11 1944 – May 12 1945

Armored
709th Tank Bn – July 13 1944 – January 26 1945
CCR (5-AD) – November 20 1944 – December 15 1944
Able Co 745th TB – February 6 1945 – February 7 1945
740th Tank Bn – February 6 1945 – March 13 1945
740th Tank Bn – April 6 1945 – May 12 1945
CCR (13-AD) – April 14 1945 – April 17 1945

Cavalry
89th Cav Recon Sq (-Trs C & D) (9-AD) – Oct 23 1944 – Nov 10 1944
13th Cav Group – December 25 1944 – February 5 1945

Chemical
86th Cml Mort Bn – July 7 1944 – September 20 1944
86th Cml Mort Bn – November 19 1944 – December 24 1944
Charlie Co 87th Cml Bn – February 9 1945 – March 10 1945
Dog Co 87th Cml Bn – February 9 1945 – March 10 1945
Charlie Co 95th Cml Mort Bn – April 4 1945 – April 18 1945
Dog Co 95th Cml Mort Bn – April 4 1945 – April 18 1945
Baker Co 89th Cml Mort Bn – April 29 1945 – May 12 1945
Charlie Co 89th Cml Mort Bn – April 29 1945 – May 12 1945

Field Artillery
174th FA Group – August 16 1944 – September 20 1944
196th FA Group – August 20 1944 – September 20 1944
402d FA Group – September 13 1944 – September 20 1944
969th FA Group – October 2 1944 – November 10 1944
687th FA Group – October 2 1944 – November 10 1944
76th FA Bn (105-MM HOW) – November 19 1944 – December 21 1944 , 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base
18th FA Bn (105-MM HOW) – November 20 1944 – December 6 1944
188th FA Bn (155-MM HOW) – Nov 26 1944 – Dec 11 1945
987th FA Bn (155-MM GUN) – November 26 1944 – December 11 1944
7th FA Bn (1-ID)(105-MM HOW) – February 6 1945 – February 7 1945
188th FA Bn (155-MM HOW) – Feb 8 1945 – Feb 28 1945
210th FA Group – May 2 1945 – May 12 1945
548th FA Group – May 2 1945 – May 12 1945
965th FA Group – May 2 1945 – May 12 1945

Infantry
2nd Ranger Bn – December 17 1944 – December 20 1944
52nd AIB (9-AD) – October 23 1944 – October 30 1944
60th AIB (9-AD) – November 2 1944 – November 9 1944
112th RCT (28-ID) – February 4 1945 – February 11 1945
2nd Ranger Bn – November 19 1944 – December 16 1944
311th IR (78-ID) – December 9 1944 – December 23 1944
16th RCT (1-ID) – February 6 1945 – February 7 1945
Able Co 1st ECB (1-ID) – February 6 1945 – February 7 1945
1/343-IR (86-ID) – April 6 1945 – April 7 1945

Tank Destroyer
644-TDB (SP) – July 15 1944 – April 28 1945
893-TDB (SP) – November 19 1944 – December 10 1944
817-TDB (T) – December 9 1944 – February 8 1945
Charlie Co 634-TDB (SP) – Feb 6 1945 – Feb 7 1945

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge BaseDetachments
Engineer
Charlie Co 12-ECB to 82-A/B – May 1 1945 – May 1 1945

Field Artillery
28-FAB to 4-AD – July 27 1944 – August 3 1944
56-FAB to 83-ID – August 6 1944 – August 15 1944
45-FAB to 6-AD – August 18 1944 – August 21 1944
28-FAB to 6-AD – August 18 1944 – August 21 1944
43-FAB to 82-A/B – April 29 1945 – May 1 1945
56-FAB to 82-A/B – April 30 1945 – May 1 1945

Infantry
13-IR to 4-AD – July 27 1944 – August 3 1944
121-RCT to 83-ID – August 6 1944 – August 15 1944
1/28-IR to 6-AD – August 8 1944 – August 18 1944
28-IR to 6-AD – August 18 1944 – August 21 1944
3/121-IR to Com Z – September 26 1944 – November 19 1944
3/121-IR to 5-AD – December 17 1944 – December 21 1944
13-IR to 3-AD – February 26 1945 – March 17 1945
3/13-IR to 3-AD – March 17 1945 – March 19 1945
13-IR to 82-A/B – April 28 1945 – April 30 1945
121-IR to 82-A/B – April 29 1945 – April 30 1945

Command Posts
December 15 1943 – Belfast, N Ireland
March 1 1944 – Knockmore, N Ireland , 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base
March 15 1944 – Omagh, N Ireland
June 30 1944 (Afloat)
July 4 1944 – Utah Beach (landed), France
July 9 1944 – La Fosseraie, France
July 25 1944 – La-Haye-du-Puits, France
July 27 1944 – St-Patrice-de-Claids, France
July 28 1944 – La-Haye-du-Puits (vic SE), France
August 5 1944 – Betton (vic E), France
August 18 1944 – Lesneven, France
August 30 1944 – Plouvien, France
September 14 1944 – La Fontaine Blanche, France
September 20 1944 – La Bosere, France
September 22 1944 – Lanviguer, France
September 30 1944 – Grosbous, Luxembourg
October 3 1944 – Wiltz, Luxembourg
November 19 1944 – Rott, Germany
December 17 1944 – Germeter, Germany
December 27 1944 – Zweifall, Germany
January 16 1945 – Groshau, Germany
February 10 1945 – Merode, Germany
February 25 1945 – Düren, Germany
March 2 1945 – Bergerhausen, Germany
March 28 1945 – Hachenburg, Germany
March 31 1945 – Haiger, Germany
March 7 1945 – Siegen, Germany
April 9 1945 – Buschhutten, Germany
April 11 1945 – Olpe, Germany , 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base
April 12 1945 – Kierspe, Germany
April 13 1945 – Meinerzhagen, Germany
April 14 1945 – Filde, Germany
April 15 1945 – Milspe, Germany
April 23 1945 – Elberfeld, Germany
April 27 1945 – Gerdau, Germany
May 2 1945 – Hagenow, Germany
May 3 1945 – Schwerin, Germany

Narrative

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge BaseDuring World War II, the 8th Infantry Division was sent to Europe to fight against the Axis. After training in Ireland the Division landed on Utah Beach, Normandy, on July 4 1944, and entered combat 3 days later, on July 7. Shortly after its arrival, the division captured Rennes. Fighting through the hedgerows, it crossed the Ay River on July 26, pushed through Rennes on August 8 and attacked Brest in September.

When Brig Gen Charles Canham, who was at the time the deputy commander of the 8-ID, arrived to accept the surrender of German troops in Brest, the commander of the Brest garrison, Gen Hermann-Bernhard Ramcke asked the lower-ranking man to show his credentials. Canham pointed to his nearby troops and said These are my credentials. That phrase has since become the 8th Infantry Division’s motto.

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge BaseThe Crozon Peninsula was cleared on September 19, and the division drove across France to Luxembourg, moved to the Hürtgen Forest on November 20, cleared Hürtgen on November 28 and Brandenberg on December 3. The 8-ID pushed then on to the Roer, a river which was crossed on February 23 1945. Düren was taken on the 25 and the Erft Canal crossed on the 28. The 8th reached the Rhine near Rodenkirchen on March 7, and maintained positions along the river near Koln. In early March 1945, the 8-ID had advanced into the Rhineland.

On April 6, the division attacked northwest to aid in the destruction of enemy forces in the Ruhr Pocket, and by the April 17, had completed its mission. After security duty, the division, under operational control of the British Second Army, drove across the Elbe on May 1 and advanced into Schwerin when the war in Europe ended. On May 2 1945, as it advanced into northern Germany, the 8-ID encountered the Neuengamme Concentration Camp Wöbbelin subcamp, near the city of Ludwigslust. The SS had established Wöbbelin in early February 1945 to house concentration camp prisoners who had been evacuated from other Nazi camps to prevent their liberation by the Allies. Wöbbelin held some 5000 inmates, many of whom suffered from starvation and disease. The sanitary conditions at the camp when the 8-ID and the 82-A/B were deplorable. There was little food or water, and some prisoners had resorted to cannibalism.

In the first week after liberation, more than 200 inmates died. In the aftermath, the United States Army ordered the townspeople in Ludwigslust to visit the camp and bury the dead. The 8th Infantry Division was recognized as a liberating unit by the US Army’s Center of Military History and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 1988.

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge BaseYes ! This post, better said this published archive has been double checked and is released to the the registered members of the European Center of Military History. Of course, I hope that you found some interesting information while reading it. At least I’ve tried to add the maximum I was able to find out.

So, what now? Well you can post a comment if you are a registered member. There is always what to say. Should you have some more information about this archive, you can also use the comment area to add them bellow the text and I will check your entry and add it to the original archive. Sometime, a small info added can change the whole history and make it more interesting for the following reader.

Bellow, you will find a listing of great Military History Books I have selected in the case you would more information. Of course, the listing is not exhaustive but it will send you to my Affiliate Amazon Account and you will be able to make EUCMH win a couple cents if you buy a book. Amazon and my EUCMH Registered Member’s Donations are both the only support for this website. This, is also up to you.

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base
as part of the Army’s 233rd birthday tribute at Arlington National Cemetery, VA, June 14, 2008. The U.S. Congress adopted “the American continental army” on June 14, 1775 The U.S. Army is celebrating their 233rd birthday since Army photo by D. Myles Cullen (released)
Do you see this black button on the left? I know you can not miss it. Clicking on it will send you the our Seamless Donation System where you will be able to not only make a donation but you can also make a donation for something, for someone and even to honor one of your loved ones like your Dad, Brother, etc.
There is always someone to honor in every single family and it is a wonderful feeling to be able to read her or his name somewhere on the Internet. I will let you think about this but I want to remember you that EUCMH Member’s are the only financial support which keeps this website online and running. The European Center of Military History is a non profit organization – and you can believe that I know what I am talking about – and when someone put five USD or more in the system this makes my day and push again ahead to work better for the readers.

One last word, if you find my English a little strange, this is entirely normal. I speak French, German, and Dutch but I learned English with World War Two Veterans during the last 35 years while touring our Belgian Battlefields (Bulge). The way these old men used to talk is not always the same as the one they use in a Bank or some Official Office. It’s even some kind of SNAFU.

Anyway, thanks for your visit. I hope you enjoyed the trip and you will come again to read another archive.

Doc Snafu

PS : Don’t forget to rate this archive with a 5 stars !
, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base

, 8-ID – OOD – 1944-1945, EUCMH Knowledge Base

For all purposes :
European Center of Military History
Gunter ‘Doc Snafu’ Gillot
rue des Thiers 8
Francorchamps 4970
Belgium
Email : gunter [at] eucmh.be




(NB : Published for Good – October 2019)

 

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.