Bloody Omaha Beach

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Benoit Douville
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Bloody Omaha Beach

Post by Benoit Douville » 11 Jun 2005 00:43

I have read a lot of litterature about D-Day and the invasion of Normandy and particularly about the assault on Omaha beach and now I am looking if it exist a list of soldiers who survived that day both on the German and American side who received awards for their courage. Of course all the men who died that day should be remember forever and that's why a lot of monuments are in Normandy.

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waldorf
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Post by waldorf » 14 Jun 2005 22:11

Norman M. Rauch (my Grandfather)

Although he recieved no awards for valor he survived that day and is still living. He went in with the first wave on Omaha beach.

Chris

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Benoit Douville
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Post by Benoit Douville » 15 Jun 2005 00:04

Chris,

Your Grandfather was on the first wave on Omaha beach and survived, that's quite an astonishing feat! I wonder how many survived on that first wave?

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Delta Tank
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Post by Delta Tank » 16 Jun 2005 00:32

Waldorf,

Which unit was your Grandfather in?

Mike

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waldorf
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Post by waldorf » 16 Jun 2005 02:28

I apologize Benoit and Delta Tank, I had some of my facts wrong. :oops: I spoke with my granddad tonight and I had the wrong wave. He was actually in the third wave going into Dog Red.

Delta Tank, he was with the 5'th Engineer Special Brigade. ( I keep running into dead ends doing research on this unit)

Chris

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Post by Delta Tank » 16 Jun 2005 14:39

Waldorf,

Have you tried reading Omaha Beachhead, American Forces in Action Series, Historical Division, War Department. I think it may be on line, but I am not sure. According to my copy of the Landing Plan, your grandfather would of landed on Dog Red between H+03 to H+30, I can't determine which is the third wave so I gave you what I believe to be the third and fourth wave. His ship before transfering into landing crafts was APA Jefferson, 146 Engineer CT. They were suppose to land directly in front of the Les Moulins draw, D-3. Believe me it was still plenty hot when your grandfather step off his landing craft.

Mike

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Post by RichTO90 » 16 Jun 2005 14:46

waldorf wrote:Delta Tank, he was with the 5'th Engineer Special Brigade. ( I keep running into dead ends doing research on this unit)

Chris
Well organizationally at least it was:

5th Engineer Special Brigade (assigned and attached)
HHC, 5th Engineer Special Brigade
37th Engineer Combat Battalion
336th Engineer Combat Battalion
348th Engineer Combat Battalion
533rd Quartermaster Battalion
4141st Service Company
4142nd Service Company
4143rd Service Company
619th Quartermaster Battalion
97th Railhead Company
559th Railhead Company
Co A, 203rd Gas Supply Battalion
131st Quartermaster Battalion
453rd Amphibian Truck Company
458th Amphibian Truck Company
459th Amphibian Truck Company
251st Ordnance Battalion
616th Ammunition Company
3466th Medium Automotive Maintenance Company
61st Medical Battalion
391st Collecting Company
392nd Collecting Company
393rd Collecting Company
643rd Clearing Company
210th MP Company
30th Chemical Decontamination Company
294th JASCO
Attached:
6th Naval Beach Battalion
4042nd QM Truck Company
26th Ordnance Bomb Disposal Squad
2nd Plt, 440th Engineer Depot Company
2nd Plt, 467th Engineer Maintenance Company
Det P, 165th Signal Photo Company
Det A, 175th Signal Repair Company
Det 1, 215th Signal Depot Company
2nd Squad, 1st Medical Depot Company
3rd Surgical Group (8 teams)
1219th Engineer Firefighting Platoon
487th Port Battalion
184th Company
185th Company
186th Company
187th Company
282nd Company (attached)
283rd Company (attached)
502nd Port Battalion
270th Company
271st Company
272nd Company
273rd Company

5th ESB T/O Strength was 6,756, its Assigned and Attached Strength circa 6 June 1944 was 9,529 men and 1,246 vehicles.

The best single source for US Engineer operations on D-Day is "Breaching Fortress Europe", by Sid Berger (he was an engineer lieutenant in the 1st ESB at UTAH). If you would like a copy you can order it through our website at dupuyinstitute.org

Hope that helps.

Rich

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Post by RichTO90 » 16 Jun 2005 14:59

Delta Tank wrote:Waldorf,

Have you tried reading Omaha Beachhead, American Forces in Action Series, Historical Division, War Department. I think it may be on line, but I am not sure. According to my copy of the Landing Plan, your grandfather would of landed on Dog Red between H+03 to H+30, I can't determine which is the third wave so I gave you what I believe to be the third and fourth wave. His ship before transfering into landing crafts was APA Jefferson, 146 Engineer CT. They were suppose to land directly in front of the Les Moulins draw, D-3. Believe me it was still plenty hot when your grandfather step off his landing craft.

Mike
Possibly not Mike. You are referencing an element of the Special Engineer Task Force, which was tasked with clearing 16 gaps in the beach obstacles for the assault force. It was a joint Army-Navy organization and comprised:

Special Engineer Task Force
146th Engineer Combat Battalion, 1121st Engineer Group
299th Engineer Combat Battalion (-) 1171st Engineer Group
NCDU 11, 22, 23, 24, 27, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 127, 128, 130, 131, 133, 140, 141, and 142

None of these were actually assigned or attached to the 5th ESB, although like the 5th and 6th ESB the SETF was assigned to the Provisional Engineer Special Brigade Group, which also included the 1st ESB at UTAH. If Chris' grandfather came in during the "third wave" he was probably part of the H+40 wave of engineers (generally the H-05 DD tank landing, H-Hour tank landing and H+01 infantry landing were counted together as the "first" wave, while the SETF landing at H+03 is counted as the "second" wave).

Chris, do you know which battalion in the 5th ESB your grandfather was assigned to?

Delta Tank
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Post by Delta Tank » 16 Jun 2005 15:01

RichTO90,

Are you sure you didn't miss a unit, like a kitchen squad or something :lol:

Mike

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Post by RichTO90 » 16 Jun 2005 17:21

Delta Tank wrote:RichTO90,

Are you sure you didn't miss a unit, like a kitchen squad or something :lol:

Mike
Actually there are quite a few units with assault credit for NEPTUNE that I have had difficulty fitting into the organization. Would you like to help? :D They are:

Order of Battle Team No.6 (Provisional)

Photographic Interpreter Team No.10 (Provisional)
Photographic Interpreter Team No.32 (Provisional)
Photographic Interpreter Team No.38 (Provisional) (3rd AD)

Prisoner of War Interrogation Team No.11 (Provisional)

Military Intelligence Interpreter Team No.407 (Provisional)
Military Intelligence Interpreter Team No.416 (Provisional)
Military Intelligence Interpreter Team No.419 (Provisional)

HHD, 100th Ordnance Ammunition Battalion
161st Ordnance Platoon

15th Ordnance Bomb Disposal Squad
23rd Ordnance Bomb Disposal Squad
47th Ordnance Bomb Disposal Squad

3712th Quartermaster Truck Company
3807th Quartermaster Truck Company

2062nd Aviation Fire Fighting Platoon

I know they were there and received credit and also know that some were part of the Engineer Special Brigade Group, but where they all fit in V and VII Corps I'm unsure.

BTW, where in Penn are you? My maternal grands are from Gettysburg (Wesley Culp is a cousin and my GGranddad wrote the response to Early's 29 June requisition) and my paternal grands are from Kittaning. :D BTW, I've been to the 28th ID HQ at Harrisburg, an impressive ediface.

Delta Tank
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Post by Delta Tank » 16 Jun 2005 17:27

RichTO90,

I forget what they call that thing on large unit orders, "Troop list" I think. I would get confused on it while on active duty, I am just glad I never had to compile and publish it!! Believe it or not there is a method to the madness I just refused to be part of the madness! :lol:

Mike

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Post by Panzermahn » 17 Jun 2005 18:04

waldorf wrote:I apologize Benoit and Delta Tank, I had some of my facts wrong. :oops: I spoke with my granddad tonight and I had the wrong wave. He was actually in the third wave going into Dog Red.

Delta Tank, he was with the 5'th Engineer Special Brigade. ( I keep running into dead ends doing research on this unit)

Chris
Hi Chris,

I remembered watching the classic D-Day movie, The Longest Day and the scene where General 'Dutch" Cota promoted an engineer sergeant to a lieutenant and asked the lieutenant whether he can blew up the German bunker with bangalores. The lieutenant died before he can setup the explosion but another engineer pushed the trigger. The German bunker exploded which were the main turning point of the battle at Omaha..

Just a recollection

Panzermahn

P.S. I also remembered the famous LIFE photographer, Robert Capa went in at Omaha with the third wave

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waldorf
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Post by waldorf » 20 Jun 2005 21:31

Thank you gentlemen for all of the information and leads to additional areas I can look.

Chris

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Re: Bloody Omaha Beach

Post by gblock » 29 Mar 2010 16:23

Just came across your inquiry. My father, who is still alive was a member of the 5th engineer special brigade 348th engineer combat battalion. He came in on the 3rd wave assigned to the 18th regiment of the 1st infantry division. He remembers reaching the beach somewhere between 11:30 and 12:30. There objective was to land at Easy Red. He recieved a minor shell fragment wound in the lower back but didn't seek medical attention nor was he awarded a purple heart. I think he was just happy to see his 20th birthday on June 10, 1944. He was later re-assigned to the 104th Infantry division in late September.

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Re:

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 29 Mar 2010 17:49

RichTO90 wrote:.....
The best single source for US Engineer operations on D-Day is "Breaching Fortress Europe", by Sid Berger (he was an engineer lieutenant in the 1st ESB at UTAH). If you would like a copy you can order it through our website at dupuyinstitute.org

Hope that helps.

Rich
I was fortunate enough to accquire a copy with four color maps still in the back. Two of Omaha & two of Utah. These appear to be reproductions of some the actual maps used in the assualt and are gems of the map making art. I am wondering: if have a complete set, if these are accurate reproductions, and if they were thee most common tactical map issued?

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