Which American units fought in both the Pacific and Europe?

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Panzerfaust XxX
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Which American units fought in both the Pacific and Europe?

Post by Panzerfaust XxX » 26 Mar 2005 21:41

I read about how the "Devil's Brigade" took Alaskian islands from the Japanese and then fought in Italy and Southern France. How many units fought in both Pacific and Europe and what is the unit history of these units?

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Andy H
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Post by Andy H » 27 Mar 2005 15:33

I read about how the "Devil's Brigade" took Alaskian islands from the Japanese and then fought in Italy and Southern France. How many units fought in both Pacific and Europe and what is the unit history of these units?
I presume that your just interested in Ground formations?

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Post by Delta Tank » 27 Mar 2005 20:20

Panzerfaust XxX,

I believe the 8th Air Force fought in both. The 8th US Air Force was transferred to Okiniawa in August 1945. I don't know how many combat missions they flew.

Mike

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Post by Panzerfaust XxX » 28 Mar 2005 03:18

No Andy I am intrested in ALL units it does not matter if they are air, land, or sea.

And btw thank you delta. :)

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Robert Rojas
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RE: Which American Units Fought In The Pacific And Europe?

Post by Robert Rojas » 28 Mar 2005 05:55

Greetings to both brother Panzerfaust XxX and the community as a whole. Well sir, in reference to your introductory posting of Saturday - March 26, 2005 - 9:41pm, it is the belief of old Uncle Bob that you are misinformed about the Devil Brigade's (First Special Service Force) participation in the Pacific Theatre of Operations during the course of the Second World War. The First Special Service Force did not participate in the liberation of the islands of Attu and Kiska in the Aleutian archipelago. I have reason to believe that you might be confusing the First Special Service Force with an organization called the ALASKA SCOUTS. The ALASKA SCOUTS (also known as Castner's Cutthroats after its creator Lawrence I. Castner) was a homegrown formation gleaned from the residents of the Alaskan Territory. The ALASKA SCOUTS was patterned around the United States Army's Ranger Organization. When the time avails itself, old yours truly would like to recommend the following work of literature for your perusal which touches on the activities of the ALASKA SCOUTS. The work of literature in question is entitled as THE THOUSAND MILE WAR: World War Two In Alaska And The Aleutians. The author is Brian Garfield and the publisher is the Bantam Book Division of Doubleday and Company Incorporated of New York. The publishing year is 1969. I hope you find Brian Garfield's literary efforts as captivating as I have. ENJOY! On an incidental note, the First Special Service Force was NOT an exclusively American military formation. The First Special Service Force was a combined American and Canadian military formation. Now you know! Well, that's my two cents worth on the subject - for now anyway. As always, I would like to bid you a copactic day from sea to shining sea.

Best Regards,
Uncle Bob :) :wink: 8)

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Peter H
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Post by Peter H » 28 Mar 2005 09:11

The US 87th Mountain Regiment participated in the Kiska Island landing,Aleutians,August 1943 and then formed part of 10th Mountain Division in Italy 1945.

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Re: RE: Which American Units Fought In The Pacific And Europ

Post by RichTO90 » 28 Mar 2005 16:44

Robert Rojas wrote:Greetings to both brother Panzerfaust XxX and the community as a whole. Well sir, in reference to your introductory posting of Saturday - March 26, 2005 - 9:41pm, it is the belief of old Uncle Bob that you are misinformed about the Devil Brigade's (First Special Service Force) participation in the Pacific Theatre of Operations during the course of the Second World War. The First Special Service Force did not participate in the liberation of the islands of Attu and Kiska in the Aleutian archipelago.
Sorry Uncle Bob, but in this case you are quite incorrect.

The 1st Special Service Force landed the 1st and 2nd Regiment on Kiska on the morning of 15 August 1943 as the advance force to the main landing force consisting of the 17th and 87th Infantry, while the 3rd Regiment was held as an airborne reserve and did not land until 16 August (by sea) along with the 184th Infantry and the 13th Canadian Infantry Brigade. Of course, there were no Japanses defenders there, so the Force was actually unbloodied in combat before it was transferred to Europe and the Mediterranean Theater, arriving in late October 1943.

Rich :D :D :D

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RE: Which American Units Fought In The Pacific And Europe?

Post by Robert Rojas » 29 Mar 2005 08:55

Greetings to both brother RichT090 and the community as a whole. Well Rich, in reference to your timely posting of Monday - March 28, 2005 - 4:44pm, old Uncle Bob will graciously acknowledge his informational error on the status of the First Special Service Force in the Aleutian Campaign. The First Special Service Force was, in fact, very much a part of the Kiska liberation force. And yes, this factoid is clearly noted on page 294 of THE THOUSAND MILE WAR: World War Two In Alaska And The Aleutians. I stand informed and duly corrected! It is not such a terribly bad thing to eat crow now and again. Thank you for your vigilance. Well, that's my latest two cents worth on the subject - for now anyway. As always, I would like to bid you an especially copacetic day over in the Old Dominion.

Best Regards,
Uncle Bob 8O :roll: :oops:

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Post by timman19 » 01 Apr 2005 20:22

Although it never happened, many U.S. units were designated for transfer to the Pacific region after Germany surrendered. I know that the 101st Airborne was one of those units. Obviously, the droppings of atomic bombs made the transfers unncessary. My uncle was a RAF squadron commander at the end of the war in the European Theatre. He was sent home on leave and told that he and his unit would be transferred to Asia. A few days before they left, Japan surrendered.

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Post by Delta Tank » 01 Apr 2005 21:31

Timman 19,

Yes, many divisions were going to be transferred to the Pacific Theater from the ETO, but unfortunatly we were going to gut the most experienced men from these divisions before they went. The "point system" was implemented and divisions that had excellent combat records against the Germans would have been pretty weak in Japan due to the departure of these combat veterans. :(

Mike

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Post by timman19 » 01 Apr 2005 21:47

Delta:

Good point but it was a fair enough system when you think about it. I'll bet a lot of guys were very disappointed to hear the news of their impending transfer. On a sort of related note, I believe that General Patton wanted a transfter to Asia. Good thing they didn't. I couldn't see him and MacArthur in the same area!

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Post by Dwight Pruitt » 04 Apr 2005 02:50

The 86th Infantry Division saw action in the ETO for about six weeks before the German surrender. They landed in the US in June, and were sent to the west coast for deployment to the Philippines. They sailed just after the two atomic bombs were dropped and landed in the Philippines after the Japanese surrender. They then were involved in processing Japanese PoW, guarding installations in Luzon and mounted a couple of sweeps to round up Japanese stragglers. I don't know if they were involved in any skirmishes or incurred any casualties in the PI.

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Post by R Leonard » 05 Apr 2005 22:13

There were more than a few USN carrier squadrons that served in both the Atlantic and the Pacific.

Some of the major, and not so major, were:

VF-42, VB-5, VS-5, and VT-5 were all aboard USS Yorktown (CV-5) and operated in the Atlantic on Neutrality Patrols before the attack on Pearl Harbor. After Pearl Harbor, Yorktown and her escorts (now that would be a great list of Atlantic and Pacific units, ships, I mean) went to the Pacific. These squadrons were involved in early raids on Japanese installations and fought in the Battle of the Coral Sea. A month later, VB-5 (temporarily re-designated as VS-5) fought at the Battle of Midway; additionally, 16 of the 27 pilots flying in VF-3 off Yorktown at Midway were VF-42 veterans.

Similarly, USS Wasp (CV-7) squadrons, VF-71, VS-71, and VS-72 operated in the Atlantic Neutrality Patrol and still in the first six months or so after Pearl Harbor and then, when Wasp went to the Pacific, fought in the Guadalcanal Campaign. USS Hornet (CV-8) squadrons VF-8, VB-8, VS-8 and VT-8 also operated in the Atlantic before heading for the Pacific where they fought at Midway and, except for VF-8, in the Guadalcanal Campaign. Air Group 8, including a reconstituted VF-8, also operated later in the war, in March 1944, off USS Bunker Hill (CV-17). VF-5, old Yorktown’s orphans, replaced by VF-42 and left behind when Yorktown went to the Pacific after Pearl Harbor, also served in the Atlantic Neutrality Patrol and then went west and fought in the Guadalcanal Campaign. There was a later VF-5 in a new Air Group 5 in action in 1944 off the second USS Yorktown (CV-10), but this, and also the new VB-5 and VT-5 squadrons, was not the same squadron.

In Operation Torch, the invasion of North Africa, USS Ranger’s (CV-4) VF-41, VF-9, VS-41 and VS-42 were in combat against Vichy aircraft, ground and naval forces. VF-9 returned to Air Group 9 (VF-9, VB-9, and VT-9) and entered Pacific combat aboard USS Essex (CV-9) in October of 1943. Air Group 9 also pulled a third tour beginning in February 1945 aboard USS Lexington (CV-16). The Ranger Air Group was re-designated Air Group 4 and went into action again off Norway in Operation Leader. Air Group 4, now consisting of the re-designated VF-4, VB-4, and VT-4, then went to the Pacific and entered combat in November 1944, operating off USS Bunker Hill (CV-17). Escort carrier fighter squadrons VGF-26 off USS Sangamon (CVE-26), VGF-27 and VGF-28 off USS Suwannee (CVE-27), and VGF-29 off USS Santee (CVE-29) were also in action in Operation Torch and were later re-designated VF-26, VF-27, VF-28, VF-29, respectively, and saw action in the Pacific. VF-26 continued operations off Sangamon and entered Pacific combat in June 1943 and, in a later tour, beginning in October 1944, operated off Santee. VF-27 operated out of Fighter I on Guadalcanal with its first Pacific combat in April 1943. A second Pacific tour for VF-27 began in June 1944 operating off USS Princeton (CVL-23). VF-28 also entered Pacific combat in April 1943 operating from Fighter I and served a second Pacific tour aboard USS Monterey (CVL-26) that also began in June 1944. VF-29 went back into combat in October 1944 aboard USS Cabot (CVL-28).

There were two USN fighter squadrons involved in the Operation Dragoon, the invasion of southern France. One, VF-74, off USS Kasaan Bay (CVE-69) was disestablished after that operation and did not see further action. The other, VOF-1, off USS Tulagi (CVE-72), was re-designated VOC-1 and served in Pacific combat from January to May 1945 aboard USS Wake Island (CVE-65).

Lastly, VCS-8 was a cruiser scouting squadron that combined its detachments stationed aboard cruisers USS Brooklyn (CL-40) and USS Philadelphia (CL-41); put their floatplanes in storage; and operated P-51C’s in Operation Dragoon until 30 August 1944. Similarly, VCS-7 combined pilots from the detachments aboard the cruisers USS Quincy (CA-71), USS Tuscaloosa (CA-37), and USS Augusta (CL-31), and picked up additional pilots from the VO detachments stationed aboard the battleships USS Nevada (BB-36), USS Arkansas (BB-33), and USS Texas (BB-35). VCS-7 operated Spitfire Vb’s over Normandy for the Normandy invasion, flying some 200 combat sorties between 6 June and 25 June 1944. Both of these squadrons were divided back into detachments upon completion of their assignments and later went to the Pacific where they resumed their gunnery spotting roles for their individual ships in the end of the war campaigns.

Regards,

Rich

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Re: Which American units fought in both the Pacific and Europe?

Post by Robert Payne » 07 Jan 2021 03:54

My Dad was in the 726th MP Bn. Which served in the "Zone of the Interior", the ETO, then after the Ardennes, they were sent to the Pacific. He was on Okinawa when the war ended. The Book "The Soldier At The Crossroads" covers the 726th in WW2. I still have German and Jap souvenirs he brought back.

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Re: Which American units fought in both the Pacific and Europe?

Post by EwenS » 07 Jan 2021 09:01

The 319th Bomb Group left the MTO in Jan 1945 having been active since Nov 1942 first with B-26 and then B-25 aircraft. It returned to the USA, re-equipped with the A-26 and deployed to Okinawa as part of the 7th Air Force between May and July 1945. It flew its first Pacific mission on 16th July.

As for the 8th Air Force, I’m not sure it qualifies as such. It is put this way in the USAAF Chronology for 16th July 1945:-

“ HQ Eighth AF is transferred without personnel, equipment or combat elements to Okinawa, where the Eighth and Twentieth AFs are to comprise US Army Strategic Air Forces in the Pacific (USASTAF) under the command of Gen Carl Spaatz”.

At the same time the XX Bomber Command that had been responsible for B-29 operations in India but had moved to Okinawa, was inactivated and its personnel used to form the basis of HQ of the 8th AF on Okinawa.

So the “transfer” of the 8th AF to the Pacific was a purely paper exercise as part of the reorganisation of various commands responsible for B-29 operations over Japan taking place at that time.

The new 8th AF flew no bomber missions in WW2 as its first B-29 groups were only arriving on Okinawa when the war ended. However on 31st July 1945, the 301st Fighter Wing comprising the 318th, 413th and 507th Fighter Groups with P-47N already on Ie Shima, Okinawa were transferred from 20th AF command to that of 8th AF and these were in combat to the end of the war a couple of weeks later.

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