Chapter XII

[1] The subsequent story of these units is threaded together from the VIII Corps G-2 and G-3 journals; combat interviews with the VIII Corps staff and the 168th Engineer Battalion; the separate troop histories in the 89th Cavalry Reconnaissance Squadron AAR; the 168th Engineer Combat Battalion AAR; and the journals of CCB, 9th Armored. (The AAR of the latter is worthless and the journals are very confused; they do, however, have many map overlays from which the action can be traced.)

[2] The history of the 7th Armored in the battle of St. Vith is better documented than any part of the Ardennes story, with the sole exception of the defense of Bastogne. All of the units organic to this command prepared AAR's, including the division trains and artillery. The unit journals, as is common in an armored division, are rather slim, although, in this case, fairly accurate. A quite complete and accurate account was prepared by one of the participants, Maj. Donald P. Boyer, Jr., in 1947 and was published as St. Vith: The 7th Armored Division in the Battle of the Bulge, 17-23 December 1944. (I have used Major Boyer's original typescript which is written in greater detail.) The combat interviews (particularly those compiled by Robert Merriam) are very informative.

[3] Colonel Matthews' body was discovered about a month later. Col. John L. Ryan, Jr., who had commanded CCR, became the 7th Armored chief of staff.

[4] This outfit was called Task Force Navaho, so named because its leader had worked his way through college selling Indian blankets.

[5] The German operations are discussed in MSS # B-333 (Lucht) and B-688 (Moll). See also ETHINT #21.

[6] 2d Lt. R. L. Westbrook commanded this platoon. Although severely wounded he led the survivors to safety, then went back to his platoon's position to search for stragglers. He was given the DSC.

[7] See above, pp. 204-05.

[8] Remer had come to Hitler's attention by his prompt actions designed to protect the Fuehrer during the July Putsch.

[9] Manteuffel tells how he met Model on foot outside St. Vith and persuaded the latter to commit Remer's brigade so as to speed up the Sixth SS Panzer Army and thus shake the Fifth loose. Freiden and Richardson, eds., The Fatal Decisions, Part 6.

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Last updated 13 December 2005