Chapter 5
L.C.I. - Landing Craft Infantry

Returning to reality, our troops boarded a train and we traveled all night and arrived in Scotland. We then walked up and I down the platform at a station. Returning to the train it took off and went right back to Southampton the next day. This was to confuse the enemy. Next I boarded a large L.C.I. (Landing Craft Infantry). This boat was especially made for the purpose of transporting troops and supplies across the channel to France. It was weird to feel the ship hit shore and doors open in the bow. We disembarked near LeHarve in the late afternoon. There was four feet of snow as we began a forced march of about 10 miles. Rumors talked about our going to a tent city and we had visions of wood floors, heat, and basic comforts. In the dark we arrived at a large open field and set up a bivouac there. Each of us had a shelter half and four of us got together to make up two pup tents without openings. Tent pegs were driven into ice as there was no way to reach the ground. While lying on our backs and with ice for a floor, it was necessary to clap our legs together to keep circulation going. It was an exercise in survival. The Company Commander hollered out loud and made a plea for someone to share his tent. A loud response came from most of the company and it was obscene! Obviously our Captain was a sissy song writer and not qualified to command. Next morning was pitiful. I was up and out at 4:00 a.m. Others tried to get a longer rest. Nearby four of our men didn't get up and it was necessary to roust them out. At a farm house quite a way off they had gotten a bottle of wine during the night. It hurt to see them being taken away and sent to the rear. Their feet would have to be amputated.

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