After the Bulge - 193rd GIR
On February 09 the regiment prepared its travel toward Châlons-sur-Marne, France for the next day. One part of the regiment maked the travel by truck and arrived at 21h50. The other part went to Arlon, province of Luxembourg, Belgium and took the train. They arrived from 22h00 on and were transferred to the camp. They arrived on February 11 at 19h30.
First row : Eugene Herrmann. Second row : Frank Gancos and two unknown soldiers - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
Left to right : unknown soldier, Frank Gancos, unknown soldier and Phil Snow - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
Châlons-sur-Marne, 1945. Left to right: John Marczyc, Paul Brand and Frank Gancos - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
Two views of Phil Snow and Eugene Herrmann (on right) - HQ II in Châlons-sur-Marne (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
John Marczyc and Eugene Herrmann - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
Left to right : unknown man and Eugene Herrmann - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
Another view of Châlons-sur-Marne. Left to right: Robert Campbell, Simon Brush, unknown, unknown and JS Smuskiewicz Jr - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
Left to right : Eugen Herrmann, Phil Snow, John Marczyc and unknown - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob MacGlasson).
Left to right: unknown, Phil Snow and Robert McGlasson - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
Robert McGlasson - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
Phil Snow - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
Eugen Herrmann - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob MacGlasson).
Frank Gancos - Co HQ II (with courtesy of Bob McGlasson).
Around February 9, 1945, the 17th Airborne Division is relieved by the 6th Armored Division and sended in Châlon-sur-Marne (France) for rest and reorganization. The unit underwent some major modifications as dissolution of the 193rd GIR badly damaged or attachment of a new artillery battalion, the 464th PFAB. During this time, the men took rest, cleaned and repaired the materiel and began again the training for an Airborne operation : Varsity ! The color pics of the 17th AB are rare. This one came from the photo album of Earl K Cavanah (ASN 37521513) from the 193rd and later 194th GIR (unpublished photo - with courtesy of Earl Cavanah and his family) and was realized in Châlon. Click to enlarge (with courtesy of Earl Cavanah and his family).
Have you said rest ...
Between early February to end of March 1945, the 17th Airborne Division was located in the vicinity of Châlon-sur-Marne (France) for rest and reorganization. Rapidly after the terrible campaign of the Bulge, the military life resumes but there is also pleasant time with shows organized with celebrities. Few of them were organized during this period with Marlene Dietrich, Mickey Rooney, ... This photo was realized at this time and shows the famous actor Mickey Rooney with Joe Summers (on the right) from the 193rd GIR (unpublished photo - with courtesy of Earl Cavanah and his family). Click to enlarge.
March 1945 ?
This picture comes from the scrapbook of Merlin L BUCK (ASN 37668572) who served in HQI Company / 193rd GIR and 194th GIR. It shows buddies in front of a "40 & 8" wagon, circa 1945. No more info with this pic but it could have been realized in winter or spring 1945 as the weather seems to be cold (unpublished original photo - TFH collection). Click on the pic to enlarge.
The dissolution of the 193rd Glider Infantry Regiment occurred in the next days, exactly on March 1, 1945. Members of the unit were transferred to others units of the 17th Airborne Division, especially the 194th Glider Infantry Regiment to prepare operation Varsity but it is another story …
When General Patton sent up the 17th Airborne Division in the battle he thought that the German units were decimated and were drawing back. In those conditions the offensive started hastily in an awful weather, in the fog and snow, with little information, and without air or adequate artillery support. It resulted into extremely violent fights against two armored divisions. The US unit recorded an important rate of casualties (approximately one thousand men were killed or wounded in the three first days of battle) but never withdrew. The official US army historian SLA Marshall wrote that no other American division underwent such a high rate of casualties so savagely during its baptism of fire.
A total of one hundred and four men of the 193rd Glider Infantry Regiment (I think it is an exact detailed except two men) died during this campaign. A lot of other GI’s were wounded and did not return in their unit. For those men frozen feet were an important cause of wound. It is meanwhile impossible to know the exact number of wounds.
One thousand hundred and nineteen 17th Airborne soldiers were killed during world war two. It means that approximately ten percent (exactly 9.3%) of those casualties were registered by the 193rd Glider Infantry Regiment only during the Ardennes campaign.
If the Battle of the Bulge created several legends that glorify the action of well-known units it has also forgotten others. The 17th Airborne Division and 193rd Glider Infantry Regiment are some of those forgotten units and it is deeply unjust. It is now our mission to preserve the memory of those men.