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The age-old proverb reads that an Army fights on its stomach.  It is a proverb easily proven and easier yet to say.  The difficulty comes in the doing.

Until the crossing of the Sauer, the tasks of supplying the Regiment were merely difficult.  After the crossing, and in the days that followed, they were difficult and hazardous.  Initially the supply routes ran through the city of Echternach where Kraut artillery zoomed in at the rate of three rounds a minute.  On the far side of the swollen river the roads were all but impassable: mud ruts up steep cliffs, and for a long time there was but one bridge over the Sauer.  No "easy" way to get around.  Not were there pauses for a breather before the dash to the banks of the Rhine, where the supply route stretched even longer over the Eifel hills.  And beyond the Rhine, with the Regiment covering more than 300 miles in 24 days, things really got tough.  But somehow the essential supplies of ammo, gas, water, and food got through when they were needed.  The 27 trucks of the Company were running 25 hours a day, but the job got done.

Among other things there was the matter of 3.000 rations to be delivered daily from the Division Supply Point to Service Company, and from there to the troops.  And the Regiment burned up 4,000 gallons of gas a day and there was a time when Service hauled gas for attached Tank and Tank Destroyer outfits.  And for ammo alone, six trucks were making the runs constantly.  Add to this the fact that the Company hauled 3,000 gasmasks from Betzdorf to Zwickau, as well as a ninety day supply of batteries for the communications net, and an emergency ration for 3,000 men, and you begin to realize the problems which were faced and solved.

Then again, at the end of the day when all the supplies might possibly have been taken care of there were the hundreds, then thousands of Nazi PW's to be taken to collecting points.  In the final days of the campaign every available truck in the Regiment was used for this purpose alone.  And for hauling our own troops too, in order to keep up with the pace which the armor was maintaining out front.  There was no end to it: a ceaseless chain of supplies of all sorts moving rear to front, prisoners and DP's moving front to rear.  And the Service Company drivers caught in the middle, Service Company personnel somehow keeping everything on the road and moving to the designated destinations.  Imagination and resourcefulness were called for.  And they were there. Never once was the Regiment caught short.  The record speaks for itself.

For the men, the most appreciated services perhaps, were PX rations and the vast volumes of incoming and outgoing mail. For Service carried the mail too, and all the countless boxes of souvenirs the Doughs were sending home, Services more than appreciated by everyone, and the guys who did it rate high.  Hard work and no glamour -- but tasks which had to be done.


Capt. Alan R. Ringrose


Capt. John Cochran

Capt. Leonard A. Pierce





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