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 Official History 
This document is an exact transcript of the original  typewritten account   of the official history of the 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion. The  battalion’s day to day activities were recorded by the  headquarters staff beginning with the battalion’s activation in January 1943 and culminating with  the unit’s deactivation in 1945. ( Our sincere thanks to
Wilbert White, a member of the 82nd Association who performed the laborious task of copying the original history document for web presentation. )


                                             82ND ENGINEER COMBAT BATTALION

                                                           DURING WORLD WAR II

                                                                    29 MARCH 1943


                                                              21 NOVEMBER 1945

                                                                          *   *   *                                            

This brief history–a moment in the annals of the eternal struggle of fr eedom-loving people-is humbly dedicated to the youths of America.
 For early in the year 1943, in an hour of deepest dark-ness, when the United States of America was faced with unparalleled adversity, in
a strife-torn universe, with her future doubtful and her way of life in jeopardy, it was her youths to whom she turned for further aid and resource. And American youth spontaneously answered her pleas. American youth, ingenuous, immature, unknown in quality, responded
to her fervent calls in a voice loud enough to give courage and consolation to downtrodden people everywhere. American youth accepted its full share of responsibility for the preservation of democratic principles and ideals well before its time, and was not found wanting.
Natured in freedom it took to arms to protect its birthright and to preserve its destiny. It left its peaceful schoolroom, its cozy fireplace, its simple pleasures to pay a full stipend towards the price of freedom. When war shadows were the darkest, when injustice was at its zenith,
and when death and destruction were most prevalent. It was the transfusion of youthful American blood into the fray that breeched the
crisis. American youth stood out as the beacon light of hope, of peace, of victory -a- veritable phalanx and bulwark against the pestilence
of hate and bondage - a - solemn promise to the world not only for the defeat of tyranny but for the future preservation of liberty, decency,
and human rights to all forever

In January 1943 the call went out to army posts across the country for recruits to fill the ranks of the newly created 82nd Engineer Combat Regiment at Camp Swift Texas. A cadre of experienced officers and non commissioned officers began arriving  at Camp Swift shortly after the first of the year.  The battalion officially began operations and training  on February 2nd.   Even as the unit was being assembled,  the army was in the process of reorganizing regiments into Engineer Combat Groups with individual battalions attached.  By 29 March, when the re- organization went into effect, the 82nd had already completed  60 days of basic training.
On 29 March 1943 the 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion was activated at Camp Swift, Texas. The battalion was organ- ized as a result of orders from the Army Ground Forces reorganizing Engineer Combat Regiments into Engineer Combat Groups. Pursuant to instructions contained in Army Ground Forces Letter AG 320.8 (3-2-4) OB-I-GNGCTM. 5 March 1943, subject: “Redesignation and Reorganization of Engineer Combat Regiments”, 1st Indorsement Head- quarters, Third United States Army, 20 March 1943. and 2nd, Indorsement Headquarters VIII Corps, 25 March 1943, the 82nd Engineer Combat Regiment, Camp Swift, Texas was reorganized effective 29 March 1943. Pursuant to General Orders No. 4, Headquarters, 82nd Engineer Combat Regiment, dated 28 March 1943, the 82nd Engineer Battalion was activated at Camp Swift, Texas, on 29 March 1943. Reorganization of the 82nd Engineer Combat Regiment resulted in the first battalion of the regiment becoming the 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion, the second battalion the 291st Engineer Combat Battalion and the Regimental Headquarters the 1115th Engineer Combat Group Headquarters and Head- quarters Company. Organization of the battalion was under Tables of Organization 5-15, 5-16, 5-17, dated 1 March 1942. The 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion was assigned to VIII Corps, Brownwood, Texas and attached to 1115th Engineer Group for training.
Camp Swift is located about forty miles east of the Texas State Capitol in Austin. Near the small town of Bastrop, on the Colorado River. Camp Swift as a new army post built to train the newly inducted men of our army. The terrain occupied by the camp is slightly rolling, sandy soil covering with scrub cedar and pine trees. The climate is warm and a south wind continuously sweeps the area.

Authorized Table of Organization strength was 29 officers, 3 warrant officers, and 632 enlisted men. On the date of organization the battalion strength was 23 officers and 762 enlisted men. Officers and their assignments on the date of activation were as follows:
Basic Training
Facing the young and relatively inexperienced young officers of the battalion,  was the task of training raw  recruits  their job as combat engineer soldiers.  The first week of training  was spent in organizing the new battalion. The  average age of  the enlisted  men of  the battalion was 22 years. At  the  time  of  activation  the  battalion  had  two  and  one half  months of basic training behind it in as much as the 82nd Engineer Combat Regiment was  activated  in January 1943.

On 5th April 1943, the Commanding Officer, Captain Carlos  V. Gallegos, was transferred to Washington,  D. C. and  the  Executive  Officer, Captain  Charlie  L.  White, assumed command of the battalion. Shortly after assuming   command,Captain  White was promoted  to the rank of Major. On the  22nd April  943,  Major Evan E. Murdock, O-352877, CE,  reported to the unit and as senior officer  took command.  Major White reverted to his old job as  Executive Officer.

The  training  program continued to advance with courses of instruction in compliance with the Military Training  Program as drawn by the War Department. As  the month of May  rolled around all members of the battalion looked  forward to the day when each man could  fire his rifle. The first week of  May  was devoted to training in rifle  marksmanship, and on the 7th and  8th of May 1943, the battalion fired the M-1 Rifle for  record. The record  firing gave the officers and the men alike a great deal  of  satisfaction as  99% of  the battalion qualified on record course “A” as prescribed by the  War Department.  It  was felt  that these results were ample reward for the hard days spent in training.

On 12th  May 1943, the battalion was attached to Fifth Headquarters, Special Troops, Camp Swift, for administration, but the battalion remained under the 1115th  Engineer Combat Group for supervision of training. The 22nd of  May 1943,  was  the end of Basic Training.  Under tests conducted by VIII Corps,  the battalion was assured that the Basic Training Program had been a  success.

On 24th May 1943,  the battalion started its Unit Training Program.  The program stressed the training of working together in the execution of daily engineer missions. Mines and minefields, bridges (both  fixed  and  floating),  roads and combat problems were the  main  subjects  stressed.

On 1st June 1943 the battalion remained attached to the 1115th Engineer Combat Group for administration. On 10 June 1943,  the battalion was called upon to  furnish a cadre of 4 officers and 66 enlisted men to activate a new battalion.  Due to the  fact that the battalion had but few well trained non - commissioned officers it was  necessary to send many of the original cadre out at this time.  The loss of the older NCO’s was a severe blow to the unit and many of the new inexperienced men were groomed to take over  as platoon sergeants and squad leaders. The cadre departed for their new unit on 8th July  1943.  Major Charlie White left the unit about the same time to take over a new assignment.  Meanwhile the training of the battalion continued and the unit began to take shape as a real engineer outfit.  Fixed bridge training was carried out on the numerous dry  gullies on the reservation,  while floating bridges were constructed on the Colorado River near the  camp. The terrain of the camp was excellent for minefield training as there were  numerous natural terrain corridors and minefields could be tied into them in a realistic  fashion.
                                                                                    *     *    *
    Commanding Officer
        Captain Carlos V. Gallegos    O-257361    CE Executive Officer
        Captain Charlie L. White    O-396939    CE  Adjutant (S-1)
        2nd Lt Robert V. Rhodes   O-1105137   CE  Intelligence Officer (S-2)
        1st Lt Michael J. Breve    O-1100460    CE  Operations Officer (S-3)
        2nd Lt. Richard R. Spurrier    O-455131    CE  Supply Officer (S-4)
        2nd Lt Robert H. Bussell    O-1106030    CE Battalion Dental Surgeon
        1st Lt Abramam A. Krugman    O-495125    DC  Personal Officer (Asst S-1)
        2nd Lt Cassy V. Santochi    O-1109646    CE  Reconnaissance Officer
        2nd Lt Frank J. Hala    O-1107458    CE

    Headquarters and Service Company
        2nd Lt George W. Terrell    O-449387    CE    Co. Comdr
        2nd Lt John J. Gruet    O-1107996    CE    MTO

    Company A
        2nd Lt John E. Tracy    O-405751    CE    Co.  Comdr
        2nd Lt Norman H. Arnold    O-1108454    CE    Platoon Ldr
        2nd Lt Raymond K. Clifton    O-1107866    CE    Platoon Ldr
        2nd Lt Charles A. Doll    O-1109244    CE    Platoon Ldr

    Company B
        2nd Lt John R. Davis    O-1110450    CE    Co.  Comdr
        2nd Lt Emil J. Farney    O-1110475    CE    Platoon Ldr
        2nd Lt Johny R. Cooper    O-1110428    CE    Platoon Ldr
        2nd Lt William H. Corrin    O-1110430    CE    Platoon Ldr

    Company C
        2nd Lt William W. Whatley    O-1108414    CE    Co.  Comdr
        2nd Lt Ralph Rathyen    O-1108256    CE    Platoon Ldr
        2nd Lt Joseph W. Schmieder    O-1109654    CE     Platoon Ldr
        2nd Lt Alexander F. Sweeney    O-1108358    CE    Platoon Ldr

 After the unit training tests were completed orders were received to move to the Louisiana Maneuver Area on 23rd August 1943 to repair roads and bridges in the area. On 14th  August 1943, the battalion with 1115th Engineer
Combat Group left Camp Swift by  motor for the Maneuver Area  An overnight stop was made in Lufkin, Texas, and
the bivouac set up in the County Fair Grounds there.The motor march was continued the next day and the battalion closed in bivouac near Many Louisiana, 24th 1500 August 1943.
The battalion had come into the maneuver area with the intention of  participating in the 4th tactical  maneuver phase.   However, teletype orders were received from the Commanding General 3rd  Army,  placing the unit on an alert status and ordering it to return to Camp Swift,  Texas,  to prepare for overseas movement.   The elation of the unit in being selected to move overseas was high and all looked forward to active participation  in battle. On 30th  August 1943,  the battalion received Ltr.,  Headquarters, Third Army,  dated 27th August  1943,  Subject  “Preparation of Units for Overseas Service”.  This letter outlined the procedure for completing training for the unit and designated 21st November 1943,  as the day of completion of such training.   Battalion strength at the end of August was 33 officers,  3warrant officers and  598 enlisted men.
The battalion had come into the maneuver area with the intention of  participating in the 4th tactical  maneuver phase.   However, teletype orders were received from the Commanding General 3rd  Army,  placing the unit on an alert status and ordering it to return to Camp Swift,  Texas,  to prepare for overseas movement.   The elation of the unit in being selected to move overseas was high and all looked forward to active participation  in battle. On 30th  August 1943,  the battalion received Ltr.,  Headquarters, Third Army,  dated 27th August  1943,  Subject  “Preparation of Units for Overseas Service”.  This letter outlined the procedure for completing training for the unit and designated 21st November 1943,  as the day of completion of such training.   Battalion strength at the end of August was 33 officers,  3warrant officers and  598 enlisted men.

On 15 September  1943  the battalion  moved  by  motor  from  the  maneuver  area and  arrived  at  Camp  Swift,  Texas,  161500  September  1943.   Upon  arrival  the  battalion was  assigned  to  III  Armored  Corps  at  Camp  Polk,  Louisiana,  and  attached  to  1117th  Engineer  Combat  Group  at  Camp  Swift  for training.   An  intensive  training  program was put into operation with emphasis on  floating  bridges and  minefields.   It  was  necessary  to hold show down physical inspections  and  equipment  inspections.   At  these  inspections  it was  found that many men  were  not fit for overseas service.  Clothing  was found to be in an unsatisfactory condition,  and,  numerous items of equipment needed replacement.  It was difficult to obtain satisfactory weapons and several changes had to be made before the weapons were considered fit for overseas service.  It was also necessary  to  have a great number of the men complete prescribed firing courses prior to overseas  movement.  About 80% of the replace- ments received required additional range firing.  On 30th September 1943 the strength of the battalion was 35 officers, 3 warrant officers,  609 enlisted men.

Overseas Orders 
On 25th  October 1943, the battalion received Ltr Headquarters XIX Corps, date25th October 1943,  Subject:  Move- ment  Orders,  Shipment  6991-G.  This letter designated the Los Angles Port of  Embarkation for shipment of all unit equipment.   Lieutenant John M. Keane, O-1113290 the Battalion Supply Officer and S/Sgt  Loret  J. Ross,  38387895, Assistant Supply Sergeant were designated to accompany the equipment  overseas.  All equipment was loaded and shipped on 3rd Day of November 1943.

On 6th day of November 1943 the battalion received a telegram from Commanding General,  XIX Corps,  designating Camp Patrick Henry as the staging area for the  battalion personnel and Hampton Roads,  Virginia,  as the port of embarkation.  Date of arrival at Camp Patrick Henry was set as 16 November 1943.  Much was yet to be  completed in the unit however as all replacements had not been received,  and some  clothing was still lacking.  Arrangements were made with the Transportation Officer at  Camp Swift,  Texas for the necessary trains and the loading of the equipment to accompany the unit.  Packing of all equipment was completed,  unfit men removed from the unit,  and all new clothing issued and plans made to depart Camp Swift on 13th day of November 1943.  On 13  November 1943 all personal and unit equipment was loaded in trains  and company kitchens set up in baggage cars.  Train No.  1  (Main 61558)  with Captain  Edgar  L.  Green,  O-286812,  as  train  commander departed from Camp Swift,  Texas 13th day of November 1943,  with fifteen (15) officers and three  hundred  forty two  (342)  enlisted men on board.  Train No  2  (Main  61559)  with Major James L. Morris,  O-453277,  as train commander departed Camp Swift, Texas as train commander departed  from Camp Swift with sixteen (16) officers and two Hundred eighty (280) enlisted men on  board.  After an uneventful trip Train No 2 arrived at Camp Patrick Henry,  Virginia  160930 and Train No 1, 161100 November 1943.  Troops were quickly  assigned to barracks and contact established with the camp commander.  Additional equipment was secured and a final physical inspection held.

Overseas Shipment
On 29th September 1943, Ltr Headquarters XIX Corps, dated 19th November  1943, Subject:  Movement  Orders,  Shipment 6991 - G was received by the unit.  The  battalion was given an overseas shipment number of 6991 - G.   The  Los Angles or Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation was designated as the port from which the battalion  would  ship personal and equipment. Several  eports and special lists of equipment were designated by this  letter.   Readiness date for movement was designated as 1st November 1943. Upon receipt of this letter all equipment was  waterproofed  and  prepared  for shipment. The  Camp Transportation Section divided the unit into two boat loads  for shipment.  Battalion Headquarters and Headquarters Company and Company A, 82nd Engineer Combat  Battalion  (Shipment  6991-G) were assigned  to  ship,  H. R. 693 (John Banvard), under the command of the  Commanding Officer,  Major J. C. Dalrymple O-30325.  Company B  and  Company C,  82nd Engineer Combat  Battalion (Shipment 6991-G)  were assigned to ship, H. R. 683 (Conrad  Weiser) under the command of Captain Edgar L. Green, O-286812.  In  accordance with Ltr Army Service Forces, Camp Patrick Henry, dated 20 November  1943,  Subject:  Movement Orders, Units under Major Dalrymple moved to the port and boarded ship 20 November 1943; units under Captain Green moved to the port and boarded ship 20th November 1943. On the date of departure from the United States the battalion was at full T/O strength;  29 officers, 3 warrant officers, and  632  Enlisted  men.   Officers  and  their  assignments  on  date  of  departure  were:

    Commanding Officer
        Major John C. Dalrymple    O-303257    CE
    Executive Officer
        Major James L. Morris    O-453277    CE
    Operations Officer (S-3)
        Captain Edgar L. Green    O-286812    CE
    Battalion Surgeon
        Captain Emanuel M. Oxman    O-385206    MC
    Intelligence Officer (S-2)
        1st Lt John E. Tracy    O-405751    CE
    Dental Surgeon
        1st Lt Adam J. Hauman    O-1726214    DC
    Asst Division Engineer
        1st Lt Richard R. Spurrier    O-455131    CE
        1st Lt Cassy V. Santochi    O-1109646    CE
    Supply Officer (S-4)
        2nd Lt John M. Keane    O-1113990    CE

    Reconnaissance Officer
        2nd Lt William S. Warner    O-1113992    CE
    Asst Intelligence Officer (Asst S-2)
        1st Lt Thomas A. Barry    O-414994    CE
    Asst Operations Officer (Asst S-3)
        1st Lt Robert D. Wise    O-471367    CE

    Headquarters and Service Co
    Commanding Officer    1st Lt Robert H. Bussell    O-1106030    CE
    Motor Officer    1st Lt Stephen C. Ransom    O-1109610    CE
    Asst Motor Officer    WOJG Louis Comeau    W-2123180    USA
    Asst Supply Officer    WOJG Elmer R. Lundgren    W-2121163    USA
    Personal Officer    WOJG Marvin Q. Silver    W-2121168    USA

    Company A
    Commanding Officer    1st Lt. Joseph W. Schmeider    O-1109654    CE
    Administrative Officer    2nd Lt. Anson W. Biggs    O-514580    CE
    Platoon Leader    2nd Lt Rex W. Towery    O-1110299    CE
    Platoon Leader    2nd Lt William T. Shanley    O-1113438    CE
    Platoon Leader    2nd Lt John J. Gruet    O-1107996    CE

    Company B
    Commanding Officer    1st Lt William H. Corrin    O-1109654    CE
    Administrative Officer    2nd Lt Gerald J. Williams    O-1116031    CE
    Platoon Leader    2nd Lt Wilbert L. White    O-520562    CE
    Platoon Leader    2nd Lt Edwin S. Malesky    O-1113336    CE
    Platoon Leader    2nd Lt Paul C. Myrick    O-1103839    CE

                Company C
    Commanding Officer    1st Lt John R. Davis    O-1110450    CE
    Administrative Officer    2nd Lt Charles A. Doll    O-1109244    CE
    Platoon Leader    2nd Lt Henry B. Nicolai    O-1111809    CE
    Platoon Leader    2nd Lt Edward Fry Jr    O-520523    CE
    Platoon Leader    2nd Lt W. L. Anderson    O-1111301    CE
On 22nd November 1943 after loading HR 693  (John  Banvard) moved from the dock area to the open harbor.   On 23 November 1943 after loading HR  683 (Conrad Weiser) moved from the dock area to the open harbor where a  large convoy was standing at anchor awaiting a naval escort, before putting to sea. On thenight of 24th November  the naval escort arrived and the  following morning the convoy headed eastward into the open sea. There were  about 65 merchant vessels and 20 destroyers in the convoy. The route of the convoy was just south of the  Bahama Islands, due east  to the Azores,  then northeast to the Straits of Gibraltar,  and through the  Mediterranean  Sea to the port of Oran, Algeria,  Africa.  The voyage was comparatively calm while crossing the Atlantic Ocean,  but  the water inside the Mediterranean was very rough.  The convey entered  the European Theater of  Operations on 2nd  December 1943.

On  5th Day of January 1944  the battalion was alerted for  movement  and  in  the afternoon  moved  to  Oran  where  it  boarded  a train  for Casablanca, Morocco,  Africa. The battalion  arrived  at  Casablanca on  8th  of  January  1944  and  went to a  temporary camp at  Camp Don D. Passage near the port.  On 12 January , the 82nd Engineer Combat  Battalionentrucked to the port of Casablanca  where the battalion boarded the HMS  Andes (HR816)  and  embarked  for  the  United  Kingdom.
The 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion disembarked  in Liverpool, England on 20 January 1944, after an eight day trip from Casablanca, French Morocco, North Africa, aboard H. M.T. Andes. British and American military bands were on hand to welcome the troops.  Troops entrained at Liverpool stations and moved at once to their English billets.  The battalion with  C Company moved to Frome, Somerset, England; while Companies A and B were billeted in Tidworth Barracks, Tidworth, Wiltshire, England.

Moving into billets, arranging administrative details, indoctrination, ect., occupied several days during which time an attempt was made to get the unit into billets  in one locality inasmuch as Frome and Tidworth were forty miles apart.  The 54th Armored Field Artillery Battalion  (3rd Armored Division) functioned as a welcoming unit for that part of the battalion in  Frome  while  the 17th Armored Engineer Battalion  (2nd Armored Division) performed a similar mission for the companies at Tidworth.   These units also provided equipment, including transportation to the battalion until it was possible for the supply depots to do so.

For a time  it  was extremely difficult for the unit to  draw organizational equipment  as the depots in England had no credits set  up  for the 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion.  This condition was due to the fact that all its organizational equipment  had  been  processed  for overseas  shipment  in the states,  had actually been shipped via a west coast port  (Los Angeles P. E.) to India, where  the  unit  had  initially  been  scheduled  to go,  and  was  still carried on unit supply records.  It  was  not  until  the property  could be dropped from these records that re-supply was made a few weeks later.

Troop Assignment (No. 8), Headquarters, ETOUSA, assigned  the battalion to the First United States Army on arrival in the theater.  Troop assignment  No. 7,  Headquarters,  FUSA dated 22  January   attached it to the1115th Engineer Combat  Group,   which  had  recently arrived direct  from  the  United States and  had  its headquarters  at Kingston Deverill, Wiltshire, England. Upon receipt of Troops Assignment No.13, Headquarters, FUSA, dated 8 February 1944, the battalion was relieved of  attachment to 1115th Engineer Combat Group and was attached to the XIX Corps; and, XIX Corps promptly  attached  the  battalion  to 1115th Engineer Combat Group by Troops Assignment No. 1, Head - quarters,  XIX Corps,  dated 16 February.  Authority to drop  from  supply records that property shipped to India was granted in letter, War Dept., 15 January 1944. File WD 370.5 (11 Jan 44)  OB-S-E-SPMOT-M, Subject:  Amendment No. 3 to Movement Orders, Shipment 6991.  The same authority released the Battalion Supply Officer, Lt. John M. Keane, and  the battalion Supply Sargent,  S/Sgt  Loret J. Ross,  who had accompanied the above equipment, from assign - ment to the unit.

Efforts to assemble the battalion in one area were successful on 12 February when Companies A and B rejoined the battalion in Frome.  Billets occupied included the Tannery, Keyford College, Whitewell Home, Locke Hill House, and Hemington House. Although the fuel ration was inadequate to heat the billets, shelter was provided.  Due to the type of structures  (old, dirty and damp)  and the fact that  troops  were  unaccustomed  to the English climate, there were numerous  cases  of sickness,  usually  colds.  The billets,  were never  considered satisfactory by the commanding officer  or  the  unit  surgeon.  Adequate  recreational  facilities  were  available in Frome and recreational convoys to nearby points of interest  did  much  to keep morals high. A disadvantage to the unit’s location was overcome when  facilities  for  training  areas  were  made  available  at  Orchard Leigh estate,  three  miles  from  Frome.  After several administrative details had been arranged, it was possible to engage in intensive bridge training, minefield laying and gapping,  physical conditioning, etc., in this area.  Very little road maintenance  was undertaken as  the  roads in this part of England were in excellent condition.  A vehicle hardstand, parking lot was constructed by Company B, at the training area and roads throughout  the area were maintained.
During  February, 1944,  many officers were  advised of  their  promotions which had been recommended and acted upon months before.  Mail  from  the  States began  arriving  after  the  middle  of  the month, none having previously received since the battalion embarked on 22 November, two and one-half months before.  Those promoted were: Major John C. Dalrymple,  Commanding Officer , to Lieutenant Colonel; 1st Lieutenant John E. Tracy to Captain; 1st Lieutenant  Adam J. Hauman  also  to  Captain;   2nd  Lt Edwin S. Malesky  to  1st Lieutenant;    and  WOJG  Elmer R. Lundgren to Chief Warrant Officer.  As of 29 February 1944 Battalion strength was 28  officers, 3 warrant officers and 617 enlisted men.  As of this  date  officers  of   the  82nd Engineer  Combat  Battalion and their assignments were as follows:

Commanding Officer    Lt Col J. C. Dalrymple    O-303257    CE
Executive Officer    Major James L. Morris    O-453277    CE
S-3  Capt Edgar L. Green    O-286812    CE
Battalion Surgeon    Capt Emanuel M. Oxman    O-385206    MC
S-2  Capt John E. Tracy    O-495751    CE
Dental Surgeon    Capt Adam J. Hauman    O-1726214    DC
Asst Div Engr  1st Lt Richard R. Spurrier    O-455131    CE
Adjutant 1st Lt Casey v. Santochi    O-1109646    CE
Bn Supply Officer  1st Lt. Thomas A. Berry    O-414994    CE
Reconnaissance Officer    2nd Lt John J. Gruet    O-1107996    CE
Asst S-3    1st Lt William H. Corrin    O-1110430    CE


Commanding Officer    2nd Lt Anson W. Biggs    O-514580    CE
Motor Officer    1st Lt Stephen C. Ransom    O-1109610    CE
Asst Motor Officer    WOJG Louis Comeau    W-2123180    USA
Asst Supply Officer    CWO Elmer R. Lundgren    W-2121163    USA
Personal Officer    WOJG Marvin Q. Silver    W-2121168    USA

    Company A

Commanding Officer    1st Lt. Joseph W. Schmeider    O-1109654    CE
Administrative Officer    2nd Lt. William S. Warner    O-1113992    CE
Platoon Leader    1st Lt Rex W. Towery    O-1110299    CE
Platoon Leader    1st Lt Robert D. Wise    O-471367    CE
Platoon Leader    2nd Lt Edward Fry Jr    O-520523    CE

    Company B

Commanding Officer    1st Lt John R. Davis    O-1110450    CE
Administrative Officer    2nd Lt Gerald J. Williams    O-1116031    CE
Platoon Leader    1st Lt Robert H. Bussell    O-1106030    CE
Platoon Leader    1st Lt Walter L. Anderson    O-1111301    CE
Platoon Leader    2nd Lt Paul C. Myrick    O-1103839    CE

                Company C

Commanding Officer    1st Lt Henry B. Nicolai    O-1111809    CE
Administrative Officer    2nd Lt Charles A. Doll    O-1109244    CE
Platoon Leader    1st Lt Edwin S. Malesky    O-1113336    CE
Platoon Leader    2nd Lt William T. Shanley    O-1113458    CE
Platoon Leader    2nd Lt Wilbert L. White    O-520562    CE

On 20 February 1944, Company C, was given the mission of constructing roads and  firing  positions at Kimmeridge Range in Dorset, England. This was a British artillery range that was taken over by the United States Army and used as a Tank Destroyer Range.The company plus one platoon, Company B, moved by motor to the range,a distance of about 60 miles, set up camp and began work. It was necessary  for  a rock quarry to be opened and placed in oper - ation to provide road material. This was accomplished by securing and operating gasolene shovels, rock crushers, etc.  All the work was done by the company in such a creditable manner that the Corps Engineer, Colonel Wilson B. Higgins saw fit to commend the commanding Officer, Lieutenant Nicolai, and the company.

 Special Order No. 61, Headquarters ETOUSA, dated 1 March 1944, promoted two Company Commanders, Lt Davis and Lt Schmieder  to the rank of Captain.  Also included in promotion on the same order were Lts. Fry and Biggs to the rank of 1st Lt.

Celebrating its first anniversary of activation, the unit held a formal parade and review at Frome, Somerset, England on 29 March 1944. The review was in the central park in the city and was attended by many civilians.Mr Scott, Mayor of  Frome,  was a  guest  in  the reviewing stand.  Twenty-eight officers,  two  warrant officers  and  five hundred and eighty-nine men participated,  and good conduct medals  were  presented  to the following men:  (General Order #2, Headquarters, 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion).

RANK        NAME        ASN    UNIT
M/Sgt            Nichols, Lonnie D.    36217851    H&S Co
1/Sgt            Miller, Ollie        6988592    Co C
RANK        NAME        ASN    UNIT
1/Sgt            Nichols, William H.    32738002    H&S Co
1/Sgt            Smith, Arnold        6396478    Co A
S/Sgt            Dinwiddie, Jeff W.    38438425    Co A
S/Sgt            McGlothin, Glen B.    38267623    Co A
S/Sgt            Roberts, Ruffus C.    36047296    Co B
S/Sgt            Sims, Charles A.    19050595    Co B
S/Sgt            Swartzman, W. L.    32830551    Co C
Sgt            Dorsey, Delmer L.    38340753    Co C
Sgt            LaPorte, Lester D.    38396518    Co C
Sgt            Leonard, Dinzel D.    38340776    Co C
Sgt            Lietzke, Carl E.        38396573    Co C
T/4            Bauer, Henry        32702572    H&S Co
T/4            Cannedy, George F.    38396219    H&S Co
T/4            Tischler, Joseph J.    38327840    H&S Co
T/4            Willis, Vincent H.    38438462    Co B
Cpl            Elkins, Jess W.        38397809    Med Det
Cpl            Friedman, Edward    33453117    Co C
T/5            Akins, Robert L.    38463848    Med Det
T/5            Archambo, Leonard E.    38463865    Med Det
T/4            White, Orvind G.    38327777    Med Det
T/5            Henderson, Lyle U.    38438491    Co A
T/5             Moore, Robert E.    33571226    Co B
T/5            Rumer, Wesley O.    37131078    H&S Co
Pfc            Chandler, August H.    6529834    Co B
Pfc            Henniger, Harold W.    35420065    H&S Co
Pfc            Horner, William R.    35413947    Co B
Pfc            Hubbard, Alfred J. Jr    33570577    Co B
Pfc            Reilly, John        32698054    Co C
Pfc            Rubin, Raymond I.    17000660    Co C
Pfc            Wells, Thomas W.    17050558    Co B
Pfc            Wimberly, A. G.        34574887    Co C
Pvt            Zeone, Eugene        13153906    Co B

Battalion strength as of 31 March 1944 was 30 officers, 2 warrant officers, and 635 enlisted men During the month of March 15 enlisted replacements  had  been  secured from the 62nd Engineer Topographic Company, most of whom had seen action in Tunisia and Sicily.  Thirteen enlisted replacements were assigned the battalion from replacement depots.

The battalion moved toa tent camp near Longbridge Deverill,Wiltshire, England, on 2 April 1944,and due to the train- ing areas available,  had opportunity to engage in range firing of all arms, assault  problems,  physical conditioning, minefield installations, etc.   As the weather improved more athletic recreation  was indulged in.  A high point in this direction was the  formation of a unit boxing team which was high in winners in the corps boxing meets.

The battalion  constructed  and  maintained  several  installations  for corps troops while at Longbridge Tent Camp.  These included a series of “mock-ups” of various types of landing craft which were used in training for loading and unloading;  a Bailey Bridge  tower  which  wa s constructed  and draped with landing (cargo) nets and used to train troops  in  disembarking  in  that  manner;  a driving range  utilizing several sections of treadway bridge to acquaint drivers with its characteristics.

While in this camp the battalion was honored by a visit and  inspection by Lt General Courtney Hodges, First Army, and Major General Charles H. Corlett, Commanding General XIX Corps.

During the month of April, both officers and  men  attended specialist  schools within the group as well as those set up by higher headquarters.  These consisted  of  Bailey Bridge,  Mine, Chemical,  Unexploded  bomb,  Mapping and Aircraft Identification schools.   By arrangement with engineer equipment companies it was possible to train a large number of heavy tractor operators, road grader operators, and power shovel operators.

The  battalion  strength  as of 30 April 1944 was 29 officers, 2 warrant officers and 637 enlisted men.  On 1 May 1944, Captain Edgar L. Green, was  promoted to the rank  of  Major per Special Order 122, Headquarters ETOUSA, dated 1 May 1944.  Also promoted on this Special Order  were 1st Lieutenant Richard R. Spurrier, to the rank of Captain and 2nd Lieutenant William T. Shanley, to the rank of 1st Lieutenant.

Preparing for channel crossing
On the 22nd of May 1944 the entire group moved to  a  bivouac in the vicinity of  Hindon,  Wiltshire, England, to pre - pare for overseas movement.  Troops were conditioned, vehicles waterproofed, and “briefings for bigot personnel of  operations in the coming invasion.   Battalion strength as of 31 May 1944 was 28 officers, 2 warrant officers and 634 enlisted men.  Officers and their assignments as of 31 May 1944 were as follows


Lt Col J. C. Dalrymple    O-303257    CE    Commanding Officer
Major James L. Morris    O-453277    CE     Executive Officer   
Major Edgar L. Green    O-286812    CE    S-3   
Captain Emanuel M. Oxman    O-385206    MC    Battalion Surgeon   
Captain John E. Tracy    O-495751    CE    S-2   
Captain Adam J. Hauman    O-1726214    DC     Dental Surgeon   
1st Lt. Thomas A. Barry    O-414994    CE    Bn Supply Officer   
1st Lt William H. Corrin    O-1110430    CE    ADE   
1st Lt Paul C. Myrick    O-1103830    CE    Asst S-2   
2nd Lt John J. Gruet    O-1107996    CE    Rcn Officer   
2nd Lt. Gerald J. Williams    O-1116031    CE    Adjutant


1st Lt Anson W. Biggs    O-514580    CE    Commanding Officer
1st Lt Stephen C. Ransom    O-110961    CE    Motor Officer   
CWO Elmer R. Lundgren    W-2121163    USA    Asst Supply Officer   
WOJG Marvin Q. Silver    W-2121168    USA    Personal Officer   


Captain Joseph W. Schmeider    O-1109654    CE    Commanding Officer
2nd Lt Wilbert L. White    O-520562    CE    Adm Officer   
1st Lt Rex W. Towery    O-1110299    CE    Platoon Leader   
1st Lt Henry B. Nicolai    O-1111809    CE    Platoon Leader   
1st Lt Edward Fry Jr    O-520523    CE    Platoon Leader


1st Lt John R. Davis    O-1110450    CE    Commanding Officer   
1st Lt Robert H. Bussell    O-1106030    CE    Adm Officer   
1st Lt Casey V. Santochi    O-1109646    CE    Platoon Leader
1st Lt Walter L. Anderson    O-1111301    CE     Platoon Leader   
1st Lt Frank W. Krebs    O-1101532    CE    Platoon Leader   


1st Lt Richard R. Spurrier    O-455131    CE    Commanding Officer
2nd Lt Charles A. Doll    O-1109244    CE    Adm Officer   
1st Lt Rex W. Towery    O-1110299    CE    Platoon Leader
1st Lt Edwin S. Malesky    O-1113336    CE    Platoon Leader   
1st Lt William T. Shanley    O-1113458    CE    Platoon Leader   
The battalion supply officer, Lt Barry  was  promoted  to  the rank of Captain per SO 153 Hq ETOUSA dated 1 June.
On 12 June1944 per GO 3, Hq, 82nd Engineer Combat  Battalion, dated 12 June,  306 additional enlisted men were
awarded  Good  Conduct  Medals  under  the  provisions  of AR 600-68.   (See attached General Order #3, HQ 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion dated 12 June 1944).

Having been alerted on 12 April 1944 for overseas  movement (Top Secret ltr, 12 April 1944, Hq XIX  Corps subject
“Alert Order”) plans had  been underway  to  move  to  embarkation “hards” on order of CG, XIX Corps and embark for France. For  the  purpose  of  this  movement the  battalion  was divided  into  three  echelons, each echelon  to  move overseas independently at separate dates, said dates to be transmitted to the  battalion by VOCG XIX Corps.

On to Normandy
On 13 June 1944, the First Echelon, consisting of the following number of officers and enlisted men, moved  from Hindon, Wiltshire, England to a marshaling area at Hursley, Hants County, England:

                     OFFICERS    ENLISTED MEN
Headquarters               8        8
Medical Department 19
Company A                  5       153
Company B                 4        154
Company C                 5        151
        TOTAL                23        475

The first echelon  with Lt Colonel J. C. Dalrymple in command left Hindon  by motor convoy at  0145, and arrived at Hursley, Hants County, England at 0710.  The Echelon remained in the marshaling area until 16 June 1944  when at 1045  it left the marshaling area by motor convoy for Southampton,  England, where it arrived at 1245.  Officers, en- listed men and vehicles were loaded on Liberty Ship SS J. D. Ross, and the ship weighed anchor at  0530 17 June 1944.  The ship sailed in the convoy southeasterly across the English Channel and arrived at Omaha Beach off the coast of Normandy, France at 1800 the same day.  There the ship anchored, and men and vehicles remained aboard due to inclement weather which prevented unloading.
Meanwhile, on 18 June 1944, the Second Echelon consisting of the following number of officers, warrant
officers and enlisted men left Hindon:

                      OFFICERS    WO    ENLISTED MEN
Headquarters            1            0          0
H&S Company          1           1        68
Medical Department 1           0          6
            TOTAL             3            1       74

The motor convey of the Second Echelon in command of 1st Lt Stephen C. Ransom left the IP at 1407 18 June 1944 and arrived at the marshaling area at Southampton, England, 1710.  Bivouac was set up near the vehicles.  At 0710 19 June the Second Echelon moved to the port of embarkation where it again set up bivouac near the vehicles.  At 0830 20 June 1944 the Second  Echelon  boarded an  LST  and   moved  into the harbor awaiting the formation of a convey.  At 1715 23 June 1944  the Second Echelon sailed southeastwardly  across the English Channel to  beach on the Omaha Beach, Normandy. France at  0330 24 June 1944. Officers, enlisted men and vehicles were unloaded
at 0845, and the Second Echelon moved by motor convey to bivouac area located 300 yards south of Govin, Sheet Lambert Zone No 1 T557753. Here  the  Second  Echelon  set up bivouac and performed routine assignments while awaiting the arrival of the other echelons.

Meanwhile the First Echelon remained aboard the SS J. D.  Ross until 25 June 1944 when officers, enlisted men and vehicles were unloaded at Omaha Beach.  The First Echelon then proceeded to bivouac area 300 yards south of Govin, France,  where it joined the  Second Echelon at 1115 26 June 1944.

The Third Echelon consisting of the following number of officers, warrant officers and enlisted men left bivouac area near Hindon, Wiltshire County, England at 0615 30 June 1944 and moved by motor 27 miles by motor convoy to marshaling area at Dorchester , Dorset County, England:

                OFFICERS    WO    ENLISTED MEN
H&S Company        1    1        29
Company A              0    0        18
Company B              1    0        17
Company C              0    0        19
           TOTAL            2    1        83

The third Echelon  remained h ere  until 2 July 1944  when  it  moved  by  motor convey  to the port of embarkation at Weymouth, England. One detachment of the Third Echelon consisting of one warrant officer and twenty-five enlisted men  left  the  marshaling area at 0440 and arrived at Weymouth at 0930.  At Weymouth  the  first  two detachments of the  Third  Echelon boarded separate LCT boats and sailed in a convey at 1300.  The convey sailed southeastwardly across the English Channel to Omaha Beach, Normandy, France, and landed at 1100 3 July 1944. These two detach- ments immediately  joined  the  first  two  echelons at Bivouac area near Govin, France.  The Third Detachment of the Third Echelon consisting of one officer and twenty- nine enlisted men left the marshaling area at Dorchester, at 1000 2 July 1944 and arrived at Weymouth at 1430 2 July. It boarded an LST at Weymouth and sailed  in a convoy at 2315.  It arrived at Omaha Beach, Normandy, France at 1100 3 July 1944 and disembarked at 2315.  This detachment set up bivouac at  Motor  Vehicle  Transit  area  No 4  until 1000 4 July 1944 when it joined the battalion at bivouac area near Govin,  France.  The battalion strength as of 4 July 1944 was 27 officers, 2 warrant officers and 630 Enlisted men.

Our War begins
 Upon the arrival of its first elements in France the battalion was placed in close support of the 29th Infantry Division, relieving the 112th Engineer Combat Battalion. Battalion bivouac area was near GovinNormandy France (qT557753).  Mission with the 29th was clearance of mines, maintaining roads and bridges, operating water points, etc.  (June 20, 1944 according to Commendation Letter)

On the 28th of June 1944 the battalion was placed in close support of the 3rd Armored Division, at that time engaged in  reducing  the  Villiers  Fossard  Salient.  This action was unsuccessful and after two days the battalion reverted to support of the 29th Division.

Until the end of July, with the exception of a few days the battalion was extremely active in close support of the 29th Division.  One  exception was  during  a  critical  period  during  which the German counter- attacks in their Carentan  salient threatened the Corps flank,  and  the  1115th Enginee r Combat Group  was alerted for a combat mission and assembled  near  La Fotelaie  (T539747)  for three  days until the  threat had ended (6 July -  8 July 44 incl.).  On other occasions the battalion closely supported the 30th and 35th Infantry Divisions for short periods.

In addition to normal engineering work  in  division rear area there were miscellaneous  jobs that  were  performed. B
Company  completed a  two  hundred  yard  by  pass  to a treadway bridge across the Vire River at Airel. Company C constructed roads and entrance to Corps Command Post near St Claire and camouflaged them.  Water points de - livered over 850,000 gallons of water during the month of July.   Gravel pits, rock quarries,  and stone crushers were operated.

The  first  platoon  of Company C was  alerted  and dispatched  for  close support of the 121st Engineer Combat Bat- talion on 11 July 1944.  On the same day the first platoon  of  Company  B was alerted and dispatched to support ad- vance of the 116th Infantry south of Couvains, France, in its attack on St Lo.

During  the  period of  13 to 16 July 1944,  several platoons were alerted and moved to support the 121st  near St Lo.   On 15 July 1944 while Company B  engaged  in  clearing mine fields two miles  west of St Lo, Normandy, France, the battalion  sustained  its  first  battle casualties.  Private Albert (NMI) Grieco,  ASN 32787278, Company B, was killed in action by enemy artillery. The third platoon of Co.  B was engaged  in  road  clearing,  and   Private Perley Davenport, was slightly wounded in action but remained duty.   He entered the hospital  the following day. Also, on 15 July 1944, Private Harry Herschenhous, was slightly wounded in action and was evacuated.  On 16 July 1944, Corporal Kennell W. Martin was slightly wounded and remained on duty.  On 17 July 1944 Private Arthur J. Lucchesi, was  wounded in left hand,  but  remained  duty.  On 18 July 1944,  while engaged  in  road maintenance  for  Company B,  near Logrie, France Private  First Glass Ralph G. Roider,  accidentally  set  off  a grenade by striking  it with a shovel. Hiis wounds  were serious with fragments in the neck and chest.  Private First Class Glenn D, Allen, Company B. working directly behind  Private First Glass Raider was seriously wounded with fragments in  neck  and chest. Both  man were evac- uated. Corporal Stephen Slivka, was also slightly wounded in the same explosion, but remained duty.

From 16 July to 26 July 1944, normal road maintenance was carried out in the division areas of the 29th Division near St Lo,  Normandy,  Francs.  On  16 July 19 a camouflage screen was constructed from  qT563649 west  to  Hill 147 to shield the concentration and movement of a task force under General Cota (Asst Div Comdr, 29th Div) that was to be used in capturing  St Lo.

On 24 July the  battalion  was  relieved of support of the 29th Division and assigned to support 35th Division,  On the same day William G. Puckett,  ASN 3834217, was seriously wounded in action when a bulldozer struck a  mine while engaged in road widening.

Close  an  the  heels  of  the  tremendous  ‟saturation”  bombing west of St Lo the city of St Lo was taken by the 29th Division was hastily motorized in order  to  regain  contact with the German forces.  Bridges were needed across the Vire River  south  of St Lo  and that mission was given   the battalion.  Extracts from operations report on the mission are included to give the details.
                                                                                                *    *    *    *
1.  Mission - At 272300 July 19 this  battalion  supported  by the 234th Engineer Combat Battalion, was assigned the mission of constructing  a bridge to pass the 29th Division  (temporarily motorized) across the  Vire River in the vicinity of Candol, France, (qT478606).  Included in   this mission was the determination of  the  best route to the bridge, the clearing the route of mines and debris, and finally the repair of this route.

2.  Plan - At 272330 the battalion was alerted and the mission and general plan outlined to staff and company commanders.

        a. Although aerial photos had been studied no ground reconnaissance of the area had been made by any parties of this battalion so a reconnaissance party was organized.  The Company Commander Company A the  S-3 Asst S-3. and a security party were to proceed to the bridge site by the most direct route, reconnoiter  the site and decide upon the type bridge which would be constructed.  This information was to be sent to the Forward CP, and then, based upon these recommendations, the proper material would be called for through rear CP.
        b. Because of the scarcity of road nets on the east side of the Vire, reconnaissance parties under the reconnaissance officer and the assistant S-2 were sent across the Vire River north of St Lo with instructions to find practicable approach roads on the west side.  This party was to report the Forward CP (at St Lo Bridge) when mission was accomplished.

        c. Since the bridge site was well forward of any previously consolidated friendly infantry positions, B Company was assigned the mission of providing security for the road clearance and repair parties, and upon reaching the bridge to establish a bridgehead on the far shore.

        d. C Company was assigned mission of sweeping, clearing, posting and repairing access road and bridge entrance and exit roads.

    3.  Operations.

        a.  The Commanding Officer A/82, S-3, Asst S-3, and a small party departed at 280030 to reach the bridge site by the most direct route.  The vehicles of this party were left at St Georges Montcocq and the party proceeded on foot through St Lo and out the access road to the southeast. No enemy were contacted and the bridge site was reached at 280320. The road used  was relatively clear except for considerable debris at St Lo, an enemy minefield, and one set of steel anti-tank gates south of the city.  The existing  three span masonry arch bridge was found to have all the spans and one  abutment demolished with a clear opening of eighty-five feet.  The river was fordable at this point and a small ford (heavily mined) existed south of the bridge.  Two other bridges beyond the damaged bridge were intact.  Since the existing road was on a high fill and extensive approach work necessary to construct a treadway bridge, the decision was made on the site to recommend construction of a Bailey bridge over the ruins of the existing bridge.  It was impossible to obtain communication with the Forward CP by  means of  SCR 300  so the S-3 and Asst S-3 returned toward St Lo and were finally able to  establish  communication at 0550 only after returning  three-fourths  of the way to  St Lo and then through C Company radio as a relay station.

        b.  The other reconnaissance party did not accomplish its mission. Two jeeps were dispatched in this case, each containing an officer, a reconnaissance sergeant, and a driver.  Both left the area at 272400 and were halted soon after by an enemy air raid.  While taking cover to avoid bombs, one officer (Lt Grust) was shot and had to be evacuated.  The party proceeded after the raid, became separated, became lost, and when one party finally did report in to  Forward CP at 0600, its information was of no value.  The other party returned to the rear CP at 0740, completely disorganized.  It had been the one that lost the officer.

        c.  B Company left bivouac area at 280115 to furnish advance patrol and security for road clearing party.  Shortly after leaving area it came under heavy German air attack was forced to detruck and take cover. This action caused a delay for forty-five  minutes.  It then proceeded to  a detrucking point north of St Lo (a route for vehicles through St Lo not yet open), and moved on foot to accomplish its mission.  This was  accomplished without incident, no enemy resistance, and, at 280600, Commanding Officer, Company B reported bridgehead secured.

        d.  C Company left bivouac at 280120 to sweep and clear the access road to and from the bridge site. It was also delayed by the same enemy air action and arrived in St Lo to begin work at 0330.  It cleared debris in St Lo. removed an enemy minefield on the road, removed one antitank barrier and swept the road and shoulders from St Lo to bridge site.  This work was completed at 280735.  C Company then continued to the far shore and swept the road from bridge site to RJ at 477603.  An abatis, enemy minefield, and friendly, hasty minefield were removed from this section of road.  They then swept and removed enemy mines at ford and both ford approaches near the bridge for temporary use and to enable AAA vehicles to move to the far side of river for protection of the bridge.

        e. Forward CP arrived at bridge at St Lo at 0250 and remainedthere until 0645, at which time it moved to bridge site.  At 0550 word wasreceived from the bridge reconnaissance party that a TS Bailey Bridge would be needed, and the rear CP was notified to send the bridge and Company A directly through St Lo to the bridge site.  Construction was begun at 0900 and the bridge was open for traffic at 1410.  No unusual difficulties wereencountered in the bridge construction.

    4. Construction of Second Bridge.

    Upon his arrival at the bridge site on the morning of 28 July, the Group Commanding Officer indicated the necessity of an additional bridge  at the site, construction to begin as soon as the Bailey Bridge was completed.  B Company was assigned this mission at 281200 of constructing a class 40, eighty-four foot long treadway trestle bridge adjacent to the Bailey Bridge.  The bridge material was furnished by the 992d Treadway Bridge Company which had been standing by for the operation, arriving at 281500.  The bridge was opened to traffic at 262045.  Demolished buildings were removed from approaches, the approaches graded, and temporary roads constructed of rubble, sommerfeld mat on chespaling and gravel.                                                                                  

After this its  first major  bridging operations  the  battalion moved south of St Lo to a bivouac near the village of   le Jogine qT478577 and was placed in close support of the 30th Division.

During the month of July 1944, the following named enlisted men of  the battalion were awarded the purple heart by battalion order:

    Corporal Kennell W. Martin, ASN 38463879, 16 July 1944.
    Corporal Stephen (NMI) Slivka, ASN 33423750, 18 July 1944.

On the first of August we were again in close support of the 29th Division and moved to Chevry, France north of the town of Vire,  where the  Germans were making  another  stand.  The town of  Moyon, France, was cleared of rubble and debris.   Here it was necessary to move many German  vehicles  and tanks which had been knocked out.  Water points were in operation for both division and corps troops.

By virtue of its work in close support of his division, Major General C. H. Gerhardt, Commanding General, 29th Infantry Division commanded the unit by the following letter.

On  the  fifth of  August  the  battalion was  given  what  turned  out to  be  its toughest assignment;  removing mines, clearing  debris  and  opening  routes  through  Vire,  France,  for critical traffic.  Extracts from the engineering report rendered best show what occurred:
                                                                                           *      *     * 
    1.  MISSION.

        At 2300 on the night of 4 August 1944, this battalion was relieved of it’s mission of road maintenance
and assigned the task of clearing routes through the town of Vire, Normandy, France, as soon as the tactical situation permitted.  One route to the southeast was to be used for an armored column, the 2nd Armored Division while a second route to the south and west was to be cleared for the 29th Division.  The town was then to be cleared for traffic in all directions.

    2.  PLAN.

        No ground reconnaissance had been, made of the city but aerial photos taken a week before were
available as well as maps of the town of Vire.  At 042230 August 1944, the staff officers and company
commanders were assembled and the general plan outlined.  Company Commanders were to be prepared
to move after 050600 in orders.  Liaison was sent to the 17th Armored Engineers (2nd Armd Div) at 050100,
this liaison to also attempt to got into Vire, and make a ground reconnaissance of the primary routes to be
opened.  The operations section after careful study of all available information prepared overlays of the town with priorities of clearing on the various routes.  At 050430, another reconnaissance party was sent to aid that initially dispatched.  At 050900, all officers were assembled and the entire plan outlined. C Company
was given the by-pass route for the 2nd Armored Division; B Company that of the 29th Division; and, the
clearance of the main part of town was given to A Company.  A section of 992nd Treadway Bridge Com - pany (120' fixed) was attached for this operation as well as two D-7 Dozers and one gasoline shovel from the  611th Light Equipment Company by the 1115th Engineer Combat Group.


        (a)  First Day, 5 August 1944. The battalion (less administrative sections) moved to an advance area
about three miles north of Vire (qT586356) at 1130.  On reaching this assembly area, B Company was
immediately moved still farther up to sweep the road into Vire as the armor advanced.  About 1230, 17th
Armored Engineers requested a D-7 Dozer improve a culvert fill which they had begun.  This job was completed at 1600 and as the D-7 was being loaded upon the trailer, a direct hit on the blade of the dozer by German artillery disabled the equipment and caused four casualties (two dead, two injured).  By 1900, B Company had cleared the road to Vire as far as the situation would permit and had dug in near the leading tank elements which were now refueling.  German artillery had been particularly heavy up and down the road, on either side of which the battalion had assembled.  Liaison with CCA of 2nd Armored Division was continuous and at 2000 the battalion began to dig in, in the area it occupied.  The location of the Forward CP was now Mesnil Robert (qT585355). During the night heavy shelling continued on both sides.

        (b)  Second Day. 6 August 1944.  The battalion mission again remained the same to closely support 2nd
 Armored Division to and through Vire.  CCA had altered its plan to go into Vire from the north and now
prodded from the west.  Company B swept and cleared roads on by-passes for armored columns west of
Vire.  Remainder of battalion remained in readiness to enter Vire when possible.  At 1800, CCA was relieved
 of mission of capturing Vire, 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion was relieved of support of GCA on Corps order, placed in close support of 29th Infantry, mission unchanged - to clear Vire for traffic as soon as possible. Company B was ordered to remain in position while A and C Companies were moved back to a new bivouac area (538355) which had been set up by the administrative section under the S-3.  Liaison parties were dispatched to 29th Division and to 121st Engineer Combat Battalion.  At 2300, the G-3 29th Division informed Commanding Officer 121st Engineer Combat Battalion that Vire was clear of enemy troops and engineer units were to move in and clean out the town at once.  That information was given this battalion.  Two reconnaissance parties proceeded at once to 121st Engineer Combat Battalion, contacted its reconnaissance party and moved into Vire under cover of darkness.  Company B with three heavy dozers attached was ordered to proceed into Vire and begin work on its assigned route (29th Div).  Companies A and C were to be prepared to move on orders from Commanding Officer.

(c)     Third Day, 7 August 1944.

            (1) At 0400 Company B proceeded toward Vire, detrucked outside the town carried engineer hand
tools and mine detectors, and entered the city to clear 29th Division route around city.  Company
Commander apportioned the work for his platoons, and set up his CP near the work.  The night was dark
and foggy, and, under this cover the working parties were able to hand clear, sweep of mines, and post the
road  originally picked out from photo study to  the southern exit of  the city by the time visibility improved.
After daylight it was  soon apparent  that enemy troops were still in the vicinity in large numbers and heavy
fire of all types was brought to bear on the engineer parties.  Two platoons were immediately cut  off by
machine gun and mortar fire and it was not until 1200 that communications were reestablished and full
conditions determined.  Reconnaissance parties dispatched the night before had experienced a similar
situation in that no resistance was encountered until daylight, at which time the party realized it was
surrounded by enemy and worked its way out.  One officer was wounded by machine gun fire and evacuated.

            (2) Company A had left the bivouac area at 0330, proceeded to   Vire, detrucked short of the town and
gone in with hand tools and machine gun fire interrupted its engineering work repeatedly but by alternately
fighting and work - ing it was able to make progress.  By noon it had advanced to the center of town.  Up to
 this time no heavy equipment had been placed in operation.

            (3)  Company C followed the same plan as Company A    insofar as movement was concerned.  One platoon was able to begin its mission about 1130 but the other platoons were left in reserve just north of Vire until the battalion commander could determine the situation.

            (4) A Battalion CP was set up at 0730 just on the edge of Vire near the bridge.  A plan of reorganizing
was immediately setup as it was apparent that control and communications had been upset. Both A and B Companies set up company command posts, established  radio and runner communications and began to send out patrols to contact their separated platoons.  No word had been heard of the reconnaissance parties dispatched the night before and none reported in until 1130.  An immediate and successful effort was made to contact infantry units in the town, and although conditions were not too favorable, it was decided to continue on the mission.  By virtue of reorganizing, pushing out reconnaissance, fighting and working, by 1500, definite progress began to show.  Company B had been reorganized and had con - solidated a defensive position in the southwest part of the town.  One platoon with equipment from 992nd had repaired the rail-road overpass into town making it a two-way class 40 bridge.  Its mission through the town to the south was complete.  Company  A had two heavy dozers at work clearing heavy debris in the center of town.  Company C was sweeping a by-pass route to the east and south of  Vire as far as the infantry front lines.  Prisoners were still being taken and casualties to personnel were occurring as the work progressed.   Part of the 2nd Armored Division was now moving into town (1600) to reinforce the 29th Division.  Heavy artillery fire which had stated at daylight was continuing and an estimated 450 rounds came into the town during the day.  Some was of extremely large caliber, though the majority appeared to be 88mm HE.  From the accuracy of the fire it was positive observers still operated in the town and on the high ground south of it.  Snipers and strong points still existed throughout.  At 1800 a German tank pene - trated the AT defense and moved in over a road previously cleared by Company B.  This tank was heavily shelled and machine
gunned our troops.

            (5) At 2000 the decision was reached to concentrate on the work directly in the center of town, in as much as Company B had completed its mission, and Company C could go no farther due to enemy action.  Both A and B Companies were ordered out of the town,all dozers attached to Company C which proceeded to work through the night.  Remainder of 992nd equipment released to parent unit.

        (d)    Fourth Day, 8 August 1944.

            A and B Companies relieved Company C at daylight with a total of four D-7 and three R-4 dozers now available to operate in the city.   Work continued, emphasis being placed upon opening the center of the town. Shellfire was still on the town as well as small arms.  Company Commander, Company A was wound- ed early in the day by sniper fire and was evacuated at 1000.  Maintenance personnel from the Engineer Maintenance Company set up an advance repair station just out of Vire to which all damaged equipment was evacuated and repaired on the spot. A second D-7 sustained a broken track and was evacuated about 1300.  Still another sustained a broken lift cable.  Work continued throughout the day in the center and southeastern part of the town.  As the dozers were used, it was necessary to pick spots where they were in defilade as they drew heavy fire whenever observers on the hills to the south could see them. Up to this time it was impossible to use a gasoline shovel in the town although one was standing by.  Two additional D-7's were obtained, one each from 611th Light Equipment  Company and 234th Engineer Combat Battalion. At 2000 Company C replaced A and B Companies on the work and continued with all available dozers.  Although a strong German counter attack was probable the work progressed very satisfactorily through the night.  Artillery fire lessened in the afternoon and ceased almost  entirely after 2200.  It was thought possible that the Germans might knock out the bridge across the Vire River so a bypass was constructed around the bridge by 2300.  Only 36' of treadway were needed in tho event  a by-pass would be used.

        (e)  Fifth Day, 9 August 1944.
            A and B Companies relieved Company C at daylight.  A gasoline shovel was not put in operation and work progressed rapidly; fire was only occasional, and, by 1200 practically all planned routes were open for at least one-way traffic and the greater proportion for two-way traffic.  At 1300 the battalion was given orders to move out of the town  at 1800.  The 20th Engineer Combat Battalion (V Corps) moved in to con - tinue widening of roads and at 1800, the 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion moved to bivouac with all personnel and equipment.

    As a result of the Vire operation a total of one hundred and twenty-eight prisoners were taken and many more killed.  Our casualties were as follows:

     Killed -in Action

    Technician Grade Five James W. Teed     ASN 33461824    5 Aug 44
    Private Samuel L. Holland        ASN 34872747    5 Aug 44

    Wounded in - Action

    Captain Joseph W. Schmieder        O-1109654        8 Aug 44
    Captain Richard R. Spurrier             O-455131        7 Aug 44
    M/Sgt Preston (NMI) Stewart                32829631        5 Aug 44
    Corporal John G. McGuire Jr               32786856        8 Aug 44
    Corporal John G. Walker                       32831009        9 Aug 44
    Technician Grade Four Homer V. Amell    32745752        8 Aug 44
    Technician Grade Five James E. Hahn      33410548        8 Aug 44
    Technician 4rade Five James (NMI) Hayes    34680025        5 Aug 44
    Private First Class Gerard H. Cadorette          31267811        7 Aug 44
    Private First Class Royal B. Dunmyer Jr        32830993        7 Aug 44
    Private William V, Wadhams                              32733929        9 Aug 44
    Private Alvise (NMI) Bowen                                36397225        8 Aug 44
    Private Maurice 0. Yates                                      38378944        8 Aug 44

    Purple Heart awards were made to those wounded and on the basis of  the above action the following other awards were made:

    Silver Star Award

    Lt Col John C. Dalrymple -  G0 #37, Headquarters, XIX Corps, dated
    26 August 1944.

    Bronze Star Award

    Major Edgar L. Green Jr    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    Captain John R. Davis    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    Captain Joseph W. Schmeider    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    1st Lt Walter L. Anderson    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    1st Lt William H. Corrin    GO #39# Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    1st Lt Robert H. Bussell    GO #38# Hq, XIX Corps, dated 30 Aug 1944
    2nd Lt Wilbert L. White    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    S/Sgt Lester V. LaPorte    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    Sgt John E. Davis    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    Cpl Jess W. Elkins    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    T/5 Alfred J. Bonacci    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    T/5 Israel Kops    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    Pfc Edward T. Molloy    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944
    Pvt Kenneth G. Swanner    GO #39, Hq, XIX Corps, dated 5 Sept 1944

    Letters of commendation from the Commanding General, XIX Corps; and Corps
Engineer were received and are included:

                                                       HEADQUARTERS XIX CORPS
                                                               Office of the Engineer
                                                                      APO 270
                                                                                                                          15 August 1944

SUBJECT:    Commendation.

TO      :    Commanding Officer, 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion, APO 230,

THROUGH:    Commanding Officer, 1115th Engineer Combat Group, APO 270,

    1. I wish to especially command the 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion upon
 the excellent manner in which they accomplished their mission in clearing the
 town of VIRE.

    2. It is realized now by all that this was a more difficult task than anticipated
  The casualties you suffered and the fact that more than a hundred prisoners
 were captured is ample evidence of the strength of enemy opposition.

    3. The tactical decisions were excellent the plan of operation was sound, and
 the courage displayed by all personnel under fire was splendid.

                                                                                                                           /s/ H. S. Miller
                                                                                                                           /t/  H. S. MILLER
                                                                                                                           Colonel, CE

201.22                1st Ind.
HQ, 1115TH ENGR C GP, APO 270, U. S. ARMY, 16 August 1944.

To : Commanding Officer, 82nd Engr C Bn, APO 230, U. S. Army.

    1.  The undersigned wishes to add his commendation to the basic commendationand to express his appreciation for the courageous and determined manner in which  the officers and men of your Battalion   accomplished the assigned mission.

    2.  The spirit and initiative of your officers and men reflects   great credit on your
 personal command.

                         /s/ William R. Shuler
                        /t/  WILLIAM R. SHULER
                             Colonel, C. E.

                                                     HEADQUARTERS XIX CORPS
                                               OFFICE OF THE CORPS COMMANDER
                                                               APO 2708 U. S. ARMY

                                                                                                                              17 August 1944
SUBJECT:    Commendation

THRU    :    Commanding Officer, 1115th Engineer Combat Group, APO 270.

TO    :    Commanding Officer, 82d Engineer Combat Battalion,, APO 230.

    1.   It is desired to commend the 82d Engineer Combat Battalion for the excellent
manner in which it accomplished its mission in clearing the town of VIRE in order
to, expedite the passage of our troops.

    2.   The facts that your Battalion suffered 19 casualties and captured 110
prisoners in this operation are ample evidence that this was a combat as well as
an engineer mission.

    3.    The 82d Engineer Combat Battalion has earned a position of high respect
among the combat elements of the Corps.

                         /s/Charles R. Corlett
                        /t/ CHARLES H. CORLETT
                            Major General, US Army

Prior to the operation at Vire, a fifty foot, Class 40, Double Single Bailey Bridge had been constructed across the Drome River just north of Chevry on the 29th Division main supply route.  This project was completed by a platoon under Lieutenant Malesky from Company C.   It was decided on 11 August to replace the Bailey Bridge with a fixed timber bridge.  Lieutenant Malesky and his platoon first jacked up the Bailey Bridge to allow work to begin on the timber bridge, which was completed beneath the Bailey, without traffic being halted until it was time to disassemble the Bailey Bridge.

On 15 August the unit moved on one of its longest motor marches since arriving in France, a distance of thirty miles into bivouac near Barenton, France (T665087).  On the same day while on reconnaissance near les Cotila, France the ¼ ton vehicle in which he was riding hit a teller mine, and 1st Lieutenant William T. Stanley received a multiple fracture to right foot, had most of his teeth knocked out, and received other minor injuries.  He was evacuated.  Private First Class Malcolm G. Goodale, driver for Lieutenant Shanley, fractured his left leg and was evacuated.  Sergeant Dinzel D. Leonard received minor injuries and remained duty.  On 30 August 1944, he entered the hospital and was lost from assignment.  Technician Grade    Five James D. Hutton was slightly wounded in action near la Touche, France by an S mine, the same day.  He returned to duty the next day.

On 16 August 1944, private Philip Greenfield and Private Michael (NMI) Popilok was slightly wounded by an S mine near La Touche, France,  but remained duty.  While in this area numerous enemy minefields as well as booby-trapped abatii were encountered and removed.  In one instance eighty-one mines were taken up.  Enemy ammunition and other supply points were in this area, all very well protected by barriers.

On 19 August 1944 and 20 August 1944, the battalion moved eastwardly approximately 92 miles by motor convoy.  Bivouac was set up near Verneuil France (vQ995116).  On 21 August 1944, two companies were dispatched to search the woods south of Senoches for enemy, pockets reported by French civilians.  No prisoners were taken.

On 22 August 1944, the battalion moved to bivouac near Les Houlles, France (vR030260) a distance of twelve miles.  On 23 August 1944 the battalion again moved twelve miles.  Bivouac was set up near Tillieres - Sur - Avre, France (vR097399).  Here it again resumed its work of clearing and maintaining roads In an assigned area.  A road patrol was also established over the road net in the Verneuil - Neuilly - Sur - Eure, Alencon - Sees Area.  Two demolished bridges were (vR051361) and (vR062363) replaced by culverts and fill.  On 25 August 1944 two German stragglers were taken prisoner in the vicinity of battalion bivouac.

    On 26 August 1944, the battalion moved to the vicinity of Breval, France (vR450572).  A road  and bridge reconnaissance of the area -Cheron Tremont- Poigny-Bazaluville-Chambleau- and of possible crossing sites of
the Seine River were made on 27 August 1944 and on 28 August 1944, the battalion was assigned the mission ofconstructing an M-1 Treadway bridge across the Seine River at Meulan, France.  Extracts from the report thereof
are as follows:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

1.   MISSION  At 1700, 28 August, 1944,  this battalion (less Company B) was assigned the task of constructing an M-1 Treadway Bridge, Class 40, across the Seine River at Meulan, Seine Et Oise, France.  This bridge was to be used in connection with the existing road nets to furnish a main supply route for the XIX Corps in its advance across the Seine and  was to be completed as soon as practicable.  The bridge company of the 17th Armored Engineer Battalion was attached to this battalion to provide bridging equipment.

    2.   PLAN  Ground reconnaissance had been made earlier in the day in anticipation of such a crossing and an advanced bivouac area and bridge park selected.  A liaison officer was therefore immediately dispatched to make contact with the 17th Armored Engineers and to lead the bridge company to the bridge park.  Company A, at 281720, was assigned the mission of providing security for the construction company.  It was assigned the further mission of holding a highway bridge on the far shore leading from an island to the far shore, inasmuch as street fighting was underway in the town of Meulan and it was feared an attempt might be made by the enemy during the night to destroy this bridge.  Company C was given the job of constructing the bridge.

3.   OPERATIONS (a) Since both A and C Companies were out on their normal mission of maintaining roads it was necessary to assemble the companies.  Company A was instructed to rendezvous at a road junction about three miles from the bridge site and then to proceed directly to the  bridge site on its mission.  Company C was assembled at the battalion bivouac and then dispatched to the bridge park.  Upon arrival at the site at 282030, an R-4 Dozer proceeded to the river bank to prepare the near approach.  This dozer was immediately subjected to observed enemy artillery fire, however, and was temporarily withdrawn and utilized in improving  the road net leading to the bridge until dark.  After dark two (2) R-4 dozers were put to work preparing the near shore approach and four (4)  raft construction sites.

               (b)  One platoon from Company A used assault boats to reach the island in the middle of the river at 2200 and held the bridge throughout the night.  No German attempts to demolish the bridge were made. Considerable fighting went on throughout the night in the  town of Meulan on the far shore between enemy infantry and our own infantry advancing  from a downstream bridgehead, upstream to the north and east.  Toward daybreak, 30 August 1944, the remainder of Company A reached the high ridge north of Meulan and posted security for the bridging operations.  In the meantime the bridge train and Company C had closed in bivouac at the advanced  bridge park at 282100.  The company commander of the bridge company and Company C then made a detailed reconnaissance of the bridge site and completed plans for construction.  At 290700 a forward CP was established at the bridge site and construction of the bridge commenced at 290800.  In spite of steady rain all day the bridge construction proceeded smoothly and without unusual incident. Because of the length of the bridge, 720 feet, the bridge company did not have sufficient saddles and it was necessary to install one trestle near the far approach.  This caused some delay that had not been anticipated.  Approaches were sommerfeld mat over chespaling.  This was covered with three (3) inches of washed gravel.  The bridge was opened for traffic at 291800
                                                                                                     *       *       *
By virtue of his work in making a detailed reconnaissance of the bridge site, Major Morris Battalion Executive  
Officer was awarded the Bronze Star (GO #40, Hq,  XIX Corps, 16 Sept 44).

On the 28th of August, Company B was attached to the 113th Calvary Group which had a special mission to
protect the corps right flank northwest of Paris.
 On 30 August the battalion moved forward again to the vicinity of Guerville, France (vR6255) a distance of
sixteen miles.

During the month of August several changes in commissioned personnel had been made due to sickness, wounds, ect., and at the end of the month (31 Aug 44) the strength was 33 officers, 3 warrant officers and 600 enlisted men.  Master Sergeant Stewart had the honor of being the first battlefield appointed officer from the enlisted personnel. (SO 227, Hq, FUSA, 20 Aug 44).  Roster as of 31 August 1944:

Lt Col J. C. Dalrymple                          Battalion Commander
Major James L. Morris                          Executive Officer
Major Edgar L. Green                           S-3
Captain Thomas A. Barry                   S-4
Captain Clarence T. Cates                 Asst Div Engr
1st Lt William K. Corrin                       S-2
2nd Lt George A. Vuksta                    Asst S-2
2nd Lt Wilbert L. White                        Rcn Officer
2nd Lt Preston (NMI) Stewart            Asst S-3

    Headquarters and Service Company

Captain John E Tracy                         Company Commander
1st Lt Stephen G. Ransom                 MTO
CWO Elmer R. Lundgren                    Asst S-4
WOJG Marvin Q. Silver                        Personnel Officer
2nd Lt Chester M. Davison                Asst MTO
WOJG Jim W. Warren                          Asst MTO

    Company A
1st Lt Robert H. Bussell                    Company Commander
1st Lt Mansel M. Mayeux                   Platoon Leader
1st Edward Fry Jr                               Platoon Leader
1st Lt Henry B. Nicolai                      Platoon Leader
1st Lt Paul C. Myrick                          Platoon Leader
2nd Lt William K. Sittig Jr                 Administrative officer

    Company B
Captain John. R. Davis                     Company Commander
2nd Lt Guido J. Antognoni              Administrative Officer
1st Lt Robert D. Wise                        Platoon Leader
1st Lt Frank W. Krebs                       Platoon Leader
2nd Lt Edward J. Fairchild, II          Platoon Leader
2nd Lt Joseph P. Campanale         asst Platoon Leader

    Company C
1st Lt Walter L. Anderson               Company Commander
2nd Lt Charles A. Doll                     Administrative Officer
2nd Lt Gerald J. Williams                Platoon Leader
2nd Lt John J. Donnelly                 Platoon Leader
1st Lt Edwin S. Malesky                 Platoon Leader
2nd Lt Henry G. Heller                    Asst Platoon Leader

    Medical Detachment
Captain Emanuel U. Oxman         Battalion Surgeon
Captain Adam J. Hauman            Dental Surgeon

During the month of August 1944 the following officers and enlisted men in addition to those previously indicated were awarded the decorations:

    Bronze Star
    Lt Col John C. Dalrymple    O-303257 GO#37,Hq, XIX Corps 23 Aug 44
    Captain Emanuel U. Oxman,    O-385206 GO#37,Hq, XIX Corps 23 Aug 44
    Corporal Jose W. Elkins,    ASN 3839?809, Go#34, Hq XIX Corps 11 Aug 44
    Private Albert (NMI) Grieco (Posthumously), ASN 32787278, GO#34
    Hq, XIX Corps, 11 Aug 44.

    Purple Heart
    Pvt Dinzel D. Leonard    38340776 GO #8, Hq 82nd Engr Bn 17 Aug
    Sgt Ralph U. Lobar, Jr    32733914 GO #8, Hq 82nd Engr Bn 17 Aug
    T/5 James D. Hutton    35663151 GO #8, Hq 82nd Engr Bn 17 Aug
    Pfc Walter D. Stahlman    32733663 GO #8, Hq 82nd Engr Bn 17 Aug
    Pvt Arthur J. Lucchesi    32786557 GO #8, Hq 82nd Engr Bn 17 Aug
    Pvt Philip (NMI) Greenfield    32785694 GO #8, Hq 82nd Engr Bn 17 Aug
    Pvt Michael (NMI) Popilok    33331494 GO #8, Hq 82nd Engr Bn 17 Aug

For the past few days Company A had been maintaining and guarding the important bridges across the Seine at Mantes.  It was also assigned the mission of removing the M-2 Treadway bridge at Rosny, just downstream from
Mantes, which was accomplished on 31 August 1944.  On the same date, Company C was given the mission of constructing an anti-mine boom across the Seine to protect a vital set of locks between Meulan and Mezieres.

Company C removed an existing M-2 treadway bridge from across the Seine   at Mezieres on the last of August. It was readily seen that the absence of Company B (attached for an indefinite period to the cavalry) was causing an increased amount of work for the other companies. Prisoners taken for the month totaled  131.

During the month of September, 1944,  the 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion remained attached to the 1115th
Engineer Combat Group.  The construction of bridges was the chief mission for the month.  Battalion water supply equipment was operated two days for corps units and the  remainder of the time for group units.  Operations for the month carried the battalion from Meulan, France, on the Seine River, to Northern Holland near the Meuse River.  Company B, of the battalion, was attached to the 113th Cavalry Group during month of August and did not return to
 the battalion control during the entire month of September.

SO # 239, HQ First U. S. Army promoted Second Lieutenant Wilbert L. White to First Lieutenant on 1 September 1944.

The first of September the battalion moved sixty-five miles from Guerville via Meulan,  Marines, Meru and Noailles
to a bivouac near  Agnetz, France.  The next day another long move was made,  this time sixty-one miles, via
Clermont, , Roye, to an area just south of the Somme River near Fay, France (vN957551).  Company C was
immediately given the mission of repairing a demolished bridge over the Somme at Bray (vN403615).  Company
C also maintained bridges at Cappy (vN440597) and Feuillieres (vN495617) across the Somme until the battalion
 was again alerted to move on 5 September.  This march north was to the vicinity of  St Amand, only a short
distance from the Belgium frontier. Bivouac area was combed for Germans upon arrival and Company C captured four.  A reconnaissance party sent out from this same area accounted for five more prisoners.

Meanwhile Company B was getting some action, more of a combat rather than engineering nature.On 3 September, the 3rd platoon, while supporting the 125th Cavalry Squadron, and en route to Tournai, France, captured one hundred and twenty Germans.  During a motor march to Wavre, Belgium, in support of the 113th Cavalry Squadron, the second platoon was attacked and in the resulting action Private Albert C. Marks was fatally wounded.
Moving seventy-two miles eastward across the Belgium boundary via Valenciennes, Mons, Nivelles we reached a bivouac near Hevillers, Belgium (vJ770290) on 7 September 1944.

Company A constructed a forty foot expedient timber bridge to replace a Bailey Bridge at Court-de-Etinne(vJ63318). That night enemy troop's with horse-drawn artillery were reported by civilians to have used the bridge we built.

While engaged in road maintenance north of Gembloux, Belgium, a platoon from Company C was informed by civilians of a German strong point nearby.  The platoon sergeant S/Sgt Carl E. Lietzke, attacked the position with his men and although he was killed in the resulting action, the   attack was successful.  Six Germans were killed, six wounded and twenty-six captured.  T/5 Larry Aiello was wounded in the same action on 8 September 1944.

The following day the battalion moved on to St Trond Belgium  (vK210490) thirty seven miles away, leaving  A Company  to maintain main supply routes for the 30th Division and to replace a Bailey two-way bridge at Jodoigne (vK959368) with a trestle bridge.   This was accomplished on  11 September and Company C then moved to rejoin the battalion which had since moved up to Roclenge - Sur - Geer (vK488418) and was awaiting orders to bridge the Albert Canal near Ft. Eben Emael.

 For a period of four days repeated efforts to work patrols close enough to the canal to reconnoiter crossing sites failed due to determined and well organized German positions.  Working along the canal near Hasselt, Belgium, on the same type of mission, a patrol from Company B (still attached to the 113th Cav Gp) was attacked by Germans and in the resulting action Corporal Richard K, Wells was killed, and, Lt. Edward J. Fairchild II and Private Lawrence P. Chemeskie were reported by Belgians as being captured.

During this time Company B was busily engaged in removing mines,   booby-trapped vehicles and equipment as well as performing combat missions as the cavalry group spear-headed the Corps advance toward Holland.  Crossing the Meuse River in the vicinity of Liege, Belgium, the cavalry was now working north on the east side of the river to drive the Germans out  of Maastricht, Holland.

A civilian theater was secured in the town of Roclenge, and through special services, a number  of shows and films provided recreation while awaiting the bridge mission over the Albert Canal.

On the 13th of September, a special task force was formed to clean  out the lower tip of the Maastricht Island be -tween the Meuse River and   the Albert Canal and bridge the Canal near Canne for immediate crossing   of the 2nd Armored Division.  This task force consisted of the 1115th Engineer Combat Group reinforced by a battalion of infantry from the 30th Division.  The 82nd Engineer Combat Battalion was given the mission of constructing a Bailey Bridge across the canal.  Late on the 13th, reconnaissance was successful in reaching the site and a de - cision was reached  to construct a 140 foot DD Bailey Bridge, Class 30.  Bulldozers under Company A went to work and by daylight the 14th Company C was able to move in with an attached Bailey Bridge Platoon and begin work on the bridge.  Construction proceeded rapidly and without difficulty until after launching when one panel in the launching nose failed dropping the bridge into the canal.  Salvage operations were successful and the bridge leveled and re-launched at noon on the 15th September and opened for traffic on the corps main supply route on 16 September 1944.

Two treadway bridges, one 228 feet long across the Albert Canal near Vise, the other 552 feet long over the Meuse River at Vise, were removed  by Companies A and C, respectively, on the night of 17-18 September.

In securing the town of Gulpen, Holland (vK700478) on the night of  15-16 September two men of Company B were wounded by enemy shell fire.  They were Private Vidal V. Torres and Private Andy Lazor, Jr. Moving to Aalbeek, Holland (vK673578) the battalion was alerted and formed part of the Corps Reserve (19 Sept 44).  This reserve was composed  of 1115th Engineer Combat Group reinforced with a battalion of tanks.   The group was not committed yet remained in this status until 26 September 1944.

During this period Company B was active with the cavalry establishing flank protection for the Corps.  Several casualties were sustained in both offensive and defensive actions.  T/5 Charles A. Haneke was slightly wounded at Simpelvilde, Holland, on 21 3eptember.1944.  Sergeant James Z. Ramsay was seriously wounded by an anti- personnel mine near Berg, Holland, on the same date.

On the 27 September the battalion received alert orders to move in close support of the 7th Armored Division through the British-held  corridor in Holland to the east of Eindhoven and then support its advance to the south and east, clearing out enemy resistance west of the Meuse River.  A bridge task-force was set up and attached to the battalion inasmuch as it was anticipated that there would be a number of canals and streams to bridge as our armor moved south through the Peel Swamp.  These attachments were the 992nd Engineer Treadway Company and the First Platoon of 503rd Bailey Bridge Company.  A battery of 467th AAA was also attached.

Having moved to an initial assembly area on the west bank of the Meuse, north of Maastricht. Liaison was estab - lished with Division Engineer, 7th Armored Division, and the battalion (reinforced) marched with the division 53  miles north through Holland to Dostappen (vE608168)  on 29 September.  An overnight bivouac was made and the following day Company A was placed in close support of CCB while Company C was placed   in close support of CCA.  Movement was resumed and twenty-five miles further north the division moved into attack position north of Overloon.  Battalion was in bivouac near St Anthonis, Holland (vE705373).  Artillery shelling and nebelwerfer fire was sporadic in the battalion area, heavy   in the company areas.  Company A cleared an enemy minefield under heavy machine gun fire, and built a twenty-four foot dry treadway over a canal one mile north of Overloon, Holland.  In another sector of the line Lieutenant Mayeux's platoon laid an anti-personnel minefield under fire.  Company C out posted and defended a sector of the line during several  nights of operation with CCA.

From these operations a number of casualties were sustained.

    Killed in Action

    T/5 George D. Sanders        ASN 312745212    Co A

    Seriously Wounded in Action

    Donald L. Berger        ASN 32B365B2    Co A

    Slightly Wounded in Action
    Sgt Ralph M. Lober Jr        ASN 32733914    Co A
    1st Lt Mansel M.  Mayeux        ASN O-528093    Co A
    Cpl Harlan E. Randunz        ASN 37273579    Co A
     Pvt Quenten R. Bright        ASN 37500629    Co A

For their work in connection with these above operations a number or individuals were recommended for awards.  Verbal commendation was given by Combat Commander CCB and the Division Engineer on the exceptionally fine support rendered by the supporting companies.
 After continuous efforts by the 7th Armored Division to push through German defenses proved unsuccessful, it was relieved on 6 October 1944, and, on 7 October 1944 the battalion  received orders to move back to Aalbeek, Holland, and rejoin the group there.  This move was made on 8 October 1944 without incident.

Meanwhile Company B was actively participating in the aggressive patrolling of the cavalry group.  On the 29th of September with the second platoon of Company B and one platoon of the 113th Cavalry Squadron, Captain Davis led his force in an attack on the enemy in the woods at vK644748.  After losing one armored car and meeting heavy enemy opposition the force withdrew to allow the artillery to fire on the enemy position.  After the artillery barrage, the force again advanced at 1745 to the town of Illikhoven, Holland (vK346755) where they set up defensive positions to hold the area taken. During the action Private First Class Alfred A. Hunter and Private Abraham F.Frank were wounded by small arms fire.  Private First Class Hunter was evacuated but Private Frank remained duty.  Pvt. First Class John J. Pellegrino sustained slight shrapnel wounds and remained duty.

The following day, 30 September 1944, the force advanced to Roosteren, Holland (vK658777) and set up defenses around the town. At 1300 patrols were sent out and discovered an enemy strong point outside of town at vK661776  After a concentration of artillery fire on the strong point, the force advanced, taking six prisoners, killed several of the enemy and the balance of the enemy force withdrew across the Juliana Canal at vK662774. Private First Class Jerome F. Vana was injured, when the truck he was driving struck a land mine.  Private Jack Weinman sustained a slight wound to the right hand, from flying shrapnel, and remained duty.

Two days later the company was relieved of attachment to the 113th Cavalry Group and returned to group area near Aalbeek to await the return of the battalion which it rejoined on 8 October 1944.

Additional Purple Heart Awards were:

    2nd Lt Edward J. Fairchild II    O-531099     GO #11, Hq 82d Engr Combat
                        Bn ,27 Sept 44
    T/5 Charles A. Haneke    33638893    GO #11, Hq 82d Engr Combat
                        Bn ,27 Sept 44
    T/5 Larry    (NMI) Aiello    32830990    GO #11, Hq 82d Engr Combat
                        Bn ,27 Sept 44
    Pvt Harry E. Withers    37674031    GO #11, Hq 82d Engr Combat
                        Bn ,27 Sept 44
    Pvt Andy (NMI) Lazor    33680112    GO #11, Hq 82d Engr Combat
                        Bn ,27 Sept 44

Battalion strength as of 30 September 1944 was 29 officers, 3 warrant officers and 596 enlisted men.  During the month of September 1944, four officers were lost to battalion.  Three lost by transfer; one missing in action.

Battalion officers and their duties as of 30 September 1944 were as

Lt Col J. C. Dalrymple     -       Commanding Officer
Major James L. Morris   -        Executive Officer
Major Edgar L. Green              S-3   
Captain Thomas A. Barry-     S-4
Captain John E. Tracy           S-2
Captain William H. Corrin      ADE
1st Lt Wilbert L, White            Rcn Officer
2nd Lt Gerald J. Williams      Adjutant
2nd Lt George A. Vuksta       Asst S-2

    Headquarters and Service Co

Captain Clarence T. Cates        Company Commander
1st Lt Stephen C. Ransom        MTO
CWO Elmer R. Lundgren           Asst S-4
WOJG Marvin Q. Silver              Pers Officer
WOJG Jim W. Warren                Asst MTO

    Company A

1st Lt Robert H. Bussell           Company Commander
2nd Lt William K. Sittig Jr        Adm Officer
1st Lt Edward Fry Jr                 Platoon Leader
1st Lt Henry B. Nicolai             Platoon Leader
1st Lt Mansel M. Mayeux          Platoon Leader

    Company B

Captain John R. Davis                Company Commander
2nd Lt Guido J. Antognoni        Adm Officer
2nd Lt Joseph P. Campanale,  Platoon Leader
1st Lt Frank W. Krebs                 Platoon Leader
2nd Lt Preston (NMI) Stewart    Platoon Leader

    Company C

1st Lt Walter L. Anderson         Company Commander
2nd Lt George E. Wagner         Adm Officer
2nd Lt Henry G. Heller               Platoon Leader
2nd Lt John J. Donnelly            Platoon Leader
1st Lt Edwin S. Malesky            Platoon Leader

    Medical Detachment

Captain Emanuel M. Oxman        Battalion Surgeon
Captain Adam J. Hauman            Dental Surgeon

(Ed. note:  After Company B's brief encounter in Germany with the 113th Cavalry in early October, The Company
 was detached from the Cavalry and returned to the battalion at Albeek Holland on October 8th. Three days later
 the full  battalion crossed in to Germany.)

The official history of the 82nd (Germany and beyond) continues on page 2
 click here