Photo by Maurice Miller- 84th Infantry Division Historical Photographer WWII

 A collection of little known facts about military service.

"Its a Fact": This page we explain some things that are sometimes misconceptions or may be unknown about the military and the 2nd Armored Division. "Its A Fact" will set the record straight. We encourage viewers to send in "Its a Fact" material,  if you disagree with the facts presented on this page, let us know, we stand to be corrected.

A Statement: 

I have very different views on some of the items that I have placed on this "Its a Fact" page, those will not be reflected on this page.  I certainly want to keep my personal feeling out of this page.  No fact should show my opinion, just the facts. If you think that I have stated my opinion in the article, just let me know, It certainly is not my intention to do this. 

82nd Engineer Combat  Bn.:This Battalion was assigned on a number of occasions during WWII. &  much of the  history of this battalion revolves around the 2nd Armored and the 29th Infantry Divisions During the race across Northern France, Belgium and Holland in Sept. 1944The battalion bridged the Albert Canal to allow the Armor to break into Germany.  The Battalion was then assigned to the 2nd Armored from  the middle of October until the 2nd was transferred to the 1st Army, to fight in the  Bulge, in mid December 1944  . The 2nd Armored spearheaded the breakout across the Rhine and we worked with the 17th Engineers bridging every river along the way.  At the Elbe river we took the 41st infantry across the river to establish the bridgehead and then worked with the 17th Engineers in a futile attempt to get a bridge and ferry across the river. I

82nd Reconnaissance Battalion, Co. "A": 2nd Armored Division was presented a Decree by the Belgian Government  on 5 May 1945, declaring elements of the 2nd Armored Division as the 1st Allied unit into Belgium on 2 Sept. 1944 at 9:30 AM in the morning.   The 2nd Armored Division received two Belgian Fourragere,s , one for the above and the division's role  in the Ardennes. Here to see copy of Decree "  "Its A Fact" 

Stolen Valor: Fake war veterans have showed up in the aftermath of all wars. This always happens, to list one: Tom Mix, western star in over 93 films, had a phony war record presented for the publics consumption. He claimed honors and wounds from Cuba (1898), Philippines (1899), and China (1900) along with the Boer War in Africa. (never in any of these) Tom Mix in real life only served in the U.S., in artillery units. All his claims about being shot and this and that, he was only shot one time by his wife, and that was during an argument. Even the VFW accepted him as a member based on all the hype about him being in all the wars listed above. There are more of these fake medal wearers, and ones that make claims to heroics acts that are blatantly untrue. " Its a Fact "

The War Room : Lists World War II Operations, all of them.

Operations for WW 2, (Code names) Here are all the operations that had a name in WW 2, there are many,  we will add as we go to gradually list every one, and link to a URL if there is one for that operation name:1.Operation-Abercombe; against the French coast. 2. Agreement; An attack on Tobruk 3. Aida; Rommel's thrust into Egypt. 4. Alaric; The German occupation of Italy. Alphabet; The allied evaluation of Narvik. 5. Ambassador's; against Guernsey. 6. Amsterdam; an allied escape line, by air from Slovakia. 7. Anthropoid; Contact with the Czech resistance. 8. Apple; against the Japanese forces in China. 9. Archery; against western Norway. 10. Argument; against German aircraft factories. 11. Ariel; French coast evacuations. 12. Attica; Along the Black Sea shore. 13. Attila; Against Vichy France. 14. Autumn Mist; German Ardennes Offensive. 15. Avalanche; Allied landing in Italy. 16. Axis; The German Occupation of Italy. 17. Backfire; A British launching of a German Rocket. 18. Backhander; An American landing on New Britain. 19. Bagration; The Red Army offensive of June 1944. 20. Bamberg; A German sweep against Soviet Partisans. . 21. Barbarosa; The German invasion of Russia. 22. Barker; A parachute mission in France. 23. Basalt; Again the island of Sark. 24. Battering Ram; Members of the French resistance, flown to France. 25. Battleaxe; Against the Germans in Libya 26. Baytown; The Allied invasion of Italy. 27. Bearskin; A Yugoslav partisan offensive. 28. Bellicose; A British "shuttle bombing raid". 29. Birdcage; Announcing the Japanese war was over. 30. Birdsong; Against Soviet partisans. 31. Biting; A cross-channel raid. 32. Black I and II; an anti-partisan sweep in Yugoslavia. 33. Blood and Ashes; Against French Resistance fighters. "more coming"

America bids farewell to the veterans of  World War II: See TAPS page. 

To veterans throughout American history, the Stars and Stripes has served as a symbol of their service and as a continuing testimony that  the service is worthwhile.  Since many flags of early America contained stripes in their design and several others had stars, there are varying accounts of when and  where the first Stars and Stripes was flown.  Flag history experts agree, however, that the first Stars and Stripes flag to have the general form we recognize today did not appear until the summer of 1777, when the Continental Congress formally resolved: "That the flag of the United States be 13 stripes, alternate read and white, that the union be 13 white stars in a blue field representing a new constellation. Interestingly, the Congress did not specify the arrangement or shape of the stars, the direction of the stripes, or the relative size of the various components  Consequently, military units and civilian public alike flew a confusing array of local, state and home-made interpretations of the Congressional flag description. It was not until 1912 that the flag was finally assured a uniform appearance, when President Taft signed an executive order prescribing the relative size, shape, and positioning of the Flag's components. A subject of almost as much debate as the shape ad design of the flag has been the question of how and when to display the Stars and Strips. 

Since 1942, when a law was first enacted to govern actual display he flag, the guiding statement has been that the flag should be flown on "days when weather permits."  The generally excepted interpretation was that the colors could be shown only between sunrise and sundown, and, even then, not during inclement weather. Growing sentiment that "Old Glory" should be kept flying irrespective of darkness and foul weather culminated in 1976, when President Ford signed legislation providing that"  "When a patriotic effect is desired, the flag may be displayed twenty-four hours a day if properly  illuminated during the hours of darkness."  The new law also permits the Stars and Stripes to remain flying through inclement weather when a flag of all-weather material is used.  In addition to its historical significance for permitting the national colors to remain aloft indefinitely for patriotic effect, the 1976 legislation may be remembered for giving life to "Old Glory".  The new flag code contains the provision that" "The flag represents a loving country and is itself considered a living thing.". "Its A Fact" Thanks! Sharon.

Flag Trivia: Little known Flag Trivia as follows:

1. During the manufacture of the flag, the material left over is never allowed to fall upon the floor. It always falls into containers.]

2. The flag planted on the moon is made of nylon and set in an aluminum frame.

3. Miniature flags of the 50 United States and 124 United Nations were carried to the moon by the astronauts and brought back to Earth. These flags were distributed by President Nixon to the governors of the states and to the heads of members of the United Nations.

4.The entire top of the flagpole is called a truck. There are many items that can rightfully be called a truck: ball, flat, star, halberd, eagle.

5. There should be no guide wires on a flagpole. It must be free standing. Reference VFW. " Its A Fact "

Seven-up Candy bar: does anyone know if this candy bar is still available, who was the candy maker that produced this bar, can this bar be obtained today. Seven Up, a bar composed of seven small, candy-box-style chocolates welded together. Its original incarnation featured four types of caramel, a Brazil nut, coconut, and jelly; was it was phased out in 1979, dark chocolate covered segments of mint, nougat, butterscotch, fudge, coconut, buttercream, and caramel. Made by Lambert Confections. 

Military Ranks & Units: Has unit chart showing what rank leads division and regiments and battalions and number of troops in each.

The Only Six Star General: General of the Armies John J. Pershing who could have worn 6 stars, but opted not to. You can find this in "When Trumpets Fade" a book about John Pershing.

Five Star Generals: There were nine, they are Generals of the Army:  Dwight D Eisenhower, George C. Marshall, Omar N. Bradley, and Douglas MacArthur. General of the Air Force:  Henry H. Arnold Fleet Admirals:  William D. Leahy, Earnest J. King, Chester W. Nimitz, and William F. Halsey. 

2nd Armored Bulletin Board: After six months entries will be removed, you have the option to resubmit your bulletin for another 6 months. " Its a Fact "

Hell on Wheels: This is the nickname of the 2nd Armored Division, the division received this name during the maneuvers in Tennessee, Louisiana, and the Carolinas, when the division rode roughshod over other outfits. Now it is a part of the division patch. " Its A Fact "

Rommel: No American general ever really ever defeated Rommel. He had left Tunisia before our victory there, " Its a Fact "

Garry Owen: When I served with the 7th US Cavalry, the unit motto was "Garry Owen,"  which is reputed to be the title of a drinking song that General Custer and his men sang.  When we saluted an officer we said, "Garry Owen Sir," instead of the customary "Good Morning," or "Good Afternoon."  Officers from other units who were not familiar with our tradition would often stop us for clarification -- especially if the speaker slurred his speech just a little, making the
salutation sound like, "Carry on Sir." Thanks to :  D. Williams 4th Squadron, 7th US Cavalry, Camp Dodge, DMZ, Republic of Korea, 1965. "Its a Fact." 

A&W Root Beer: A favorite in the World War 2 era., remember the barrel and the sign. Then the question: "What does A&W of A&W Root Beer stand for?" A (Allen) & W (right) . Roy Allen mixed up his first batch of Root Beer in June 1919 in Lodi, Calif., selling a mug for a nickel. Frank Wright, an employee from Allen's original location, became his partner in 1922. They combined the initials and formally named the beverage A&W Root Beer. In 1924 , Allen bought Wright's share of the business to actively pursue a franchise sales program and had the name A&W Root Beer, and the A&W logo, legally trademarked. Its just a little bit of America and look down memory lane. " Its a Fact"

"Lady Be Good": On 9 November 1958, a B-24 bomber was discovered by as British oil reconnaissance crew, 385 miles due south of Tobruk, Libya. This was a site in the Northern Libya desert, in the war zone. The Air Corps serial # , 41-24301, taken from the plane, was sent to St. Louis for identification. The plane christened " The Lady Be Good " by parties unknown, had a crew assigned to it on 17 February 1943. Lt. Millard Kesler, a Hillsboro, Ohio native was the assigned navigator. The Air Force officer in charge of records at St. Louis knew Lt. Kesler, and that he was at Wright Patterson Air Base in Dayton, Ohio.

When contacted Lt. Kesler gave the history of the " Lady Be Good ". Kesler said he and the rest of the crew assigned in 1943 were awaiting take off time to proceed on their and the plane's first mission when those fabulous WW 11 Gremlins " went to work. Multiple engine mal-functions. They just could not get all the engines to run. In 1943 a, a full air crew was not going to stand around long, idle. The crew was reassigned to a reserve bomber which was about one step away from the junk yard, and given a different assignment. The " Gremlins" bring banished. "The Lady Be Good" took on a new crew, this also being their first mission, and departed for North Africa. This is the last time the plane and its crew was seen for sixteen years. The poem below written by Neil Walker.             

Searching for a single beacon of light on a darkened coast
The Lady returned following her date over Italy.
The crewmen were glad-they were alive;
While so many prolonged their date into eternity.
Ever downward they searched for the signal
Separating the end of the unseen yet very present water
And the beginning of Sahara's black vastness.
The engines seemed to become louder and more insistent
As those inside strained against glass
Soaring undetected farther and farther into Africa's night.
Lost behind flashing into a now empty sky
Was the Tunisian welcome
While ahead lay the gaping jaws of an invisible hell.

Go to " Lady Be Good Site for rest of the story and pictures. " Its a Fact ". 

 Lady Be Good: New update12 April 2000.  By Maj. Dale Rosenburg , Air Combat Command

I was watching the history channel the other day and ran across a very interesting documentary entitled, "Ghost Plane of the Desert: Lady Be Good." It focused on the disappearance, and later discovery, of a B-24D Liberator lost during World War II.
The aircraft departed from a base in Soluch, Libya, in April 1943, as part of a 25-aircraft package intending to strike Naples, Italy. About three-quarters of the way to the target, the group aborted the mission due to poor weather. When the aircraft aborted, they broke formation and came back as single ships. All the aircraft returned, except the Lady Be Good.
The last known radio transmission from the Lady Be Good was a request to the home field for a radio course indication. After being several hours overdue, it was assumed the Lady Be Good was down, and search aircraft were dispatched to search for wreckage at sea. None was ever found, so it was assumed the Lady Be Good had crashed and sank with her crew.
In 1959, a British Petroleum oil survey crew was looking for oil in the African desert 440 miles from Soluch, Libya, where the Lady Be Good had been based. They discovered the wreckage of a B-24 which proved to be the Lady Be Good.
The Air Force dispatched investigators who made some startling discoveries.
First, none of the crew was in the Lady Be Good when it crashed, nor were their remains anywhere near the aircraft. Second, the navigator made no log entries after the mission was aborted. Third, the navigator's equipment and charts were stored in their cases. At this point, investigators concluded the navigator stopped doing his job shortly after they turned back for home.
Other bomber crews had reported higher than normal tail winds that night, but because the Lady Be Good's navigator wasn't doing his job, they flew right over their home field and kept on going. Lost and out of fuel, the crew bailed out. Several years later BP surveyors located five of the nine crewmembers' remains 80 miles from the original crash site.
Surveyors discovered a diary on one of the crew that cleared up many mysteries. It told how one crewmember was killed instantly when his parachute failed to open. Daily entries described the harsh African desert conditions and the fact they had only one-half canteen of water for all of them, and no food.
Bottom line, the crew tried to walk out of the desert and covered 80 miles in eight days before they perished. It would be several years before two more of the crew were found about 25 miles from the others. The final crewman has never been found and is believed buried by years of blowing sand dunes.
So why do I tell this story and what lessons can we learn from it? Probably the biggest lesson is one that has literally thousands of examples in history: complacency has caused more accidents and fatalities than most diseases.
In the case of Lady Be Good, the crew got complacent about their jobs. Once they turned back they were so relieved there was not going to be any shooting that turning 180 degrees back to home base would be a cake walk. They let down their guard, and in the middle of the biggest shooting war in history, died not from bullets or anti-aircraft fire but rather from complacency.
For those of us in the aircraft maintenance business, there is no more insidious enemy than complacency. A crew chief looks over the same airplane day in and day out, sometimes several times a day. He or she follows the same checklist until they know it by heart.
How many of you check your car's engine oil at every gas fill up? You figure it was good before, so it's good now. And pretty soon you get to the point where you never check it; you just wait until the next change is due. You are complacent. If your car motor runs out of oil you will need a new engine, but it's not life or death.
However, if an F-16 aircraft engine runs out of oil, most likely the pilot is going to have a nylon letdown (ejection).
My point is you must balance the possible consequences of your actions or non-actions with the seriousness of the work to be done. Anytime something becomes routine, be aware. Complacency can sneak up and bite you.
Complacency can have catastrophic effects not just in the aircraft operations and maintenance world, but anywhere. The best way I have found to avoid complacency is to be aware. Pilots use a term called situational awareness, and that is what I mean by being aware.
Understand the seriousness of what you are doing and what can happen if it isn't done right, even if it seems routine. And if you're not sure about something, ask. The answers and experts are out there. (Major Rosenburg is the 57th Component Repair Squadron commander, Nellis AFB, Nev.)

Gen. Patton's, 1938 Cadillac: The story is that the car had been shipped to France prior to the war and was taken captive by German occupation forces when they overran France. It was left behind as the German's retreated and was subsequently commandeered by Gen. Patton. The Cadillac was a series 75 Fleetwood Model 7533 seven passenger Imperial sedan with a sliding glass partition. Records show that some of 479 of this model were produced in 1938.Gen. Patton was the ultimate soldier faced prospects of a career in civilian life with great uncertainty. Indeed he often said! " the proper end for the professional soldier is a quick death inflicted by the last bullet of the last battle. ." However Gen. Patton met his fate not by that last bullet, but while riding in the 1938 Cadillac. Glen. Patton's view of his postwar future took an almost death wish aura, which on several occasions in 1945 were almost fulfilled. These brushes with death included near misses when his Piper Cub was mistakenly attacked by an inexperienced Free-Polish pilot while flying a RAF Spitfire, his speeding Jeep collided with an oxcart, and a minor car accident from which he escaped with minor injuries.

On 9 December 1945, Gen. Patton was riding in his Cadillac and his driver swerved to miss a truck on a curve, it was at the time thought to be a minor accident, but Gen. Patton did not fare well. On 21 December 1945 Gen. Patton would die from those injuries. After the accident the car was repaired and then used by the Army VIP's until 1951. The repairs were quite interesting. While the Cadillac was a 1938 model, the front was restored using parts from another 1939 Series 75 car that was found in France. Thus the car now on display at the Patton Museum of Cavalry and Armor at Ft. Knox is deceiving. It looks like a 1939 model, however, the Cadillac buffs quickly see that it is really a 1938 model. And even the repairs did not duplicate the 1939 model. ( Note: Gen. Eisenhower gave Gen. Bradley a 1942 Cadillac to drive in Europe during the Belgian Bulge ). " Its a Fact "

Casualties: World War 1 casualties were 31.5 million. (Taken from World War 2 was over (fifty) 50,000,000 million. "Its a Fact"

U.S. POW' S by War: Revolutionary-1775-83, Number 20,000, Died 8,500.-- War of 1812-15, Britain 5,000, Died 252. Canada, Died 100. ---Civil War 1861-65, Union 194,000, Confederate 214,000, Died Union 30,218, Confederate, 24,976,.---Spanish-American 1898, 12, Died 0,---- Philippines, 1899-1902, 12, Died ?( many killed by guerrilla, unaccounted for), ---WW1, 1917-18, 4,120, Died, 147.----- WW2, 1941-45, European Theater, 93,941, Died 1,124.--- Pacific Theater, 27,465, Died, 11,107.--- Cold War: Siberia, 1942-45, 291, crash landed there and held.).--- WW2 Russia, 1945, 191 POW's never accounted for were prisoners in German POW camps and Russia relocated to Russia.----. China, 1952-73, 2, Died 0. USS Pueblo, 81, Died 0.---- Korean, 1950-53, 7,141, Died 2,701.---- Vietnam, 196075, 766, Died 114.( we question this figure )----Persian Gulf, 1991, 23, Died 0. ---Somalia, 1993, 1, Died 1. ( Died =while in captivity ) "Its a Fact "

Major William Martin: .A body with this fictitious name was launched from the submarine Seraph off the coast of Spain by Britain with a courier's briefcase chained to its wrist, as though it had washed up from a plane crash at sea. Ingeniously drafted high-level documents and personal letters were planted on "Martin" indication that our next attacks would come against Sardinia, Corsica and Greece and that to disguise them, an apparent feint at Sicily; would become the cover plan./ It worked the documents reached the Germans and they immediately; reinforced those spots leaving Sicily alone as the Allied forces intended " Its a Fact ".

Army Pay: In the 1930 to 1940 era the army pay for a private per month was $12.00 (twelve dollars) per month, if you held a marksman medal you received $3.00 (three dollars) more per month and if you held a expert marksman medal, you received $5.00 (five dollars) more. " Its a Fact "

Four Star Generals: ( WW 2): Received pay of less than $13,000 (thirteen thousand dollars) per year. A "5 Star General's" pay in 1951 was $17,000 ( seventeen thousand dollars) per year." Its a Fact "

Ft. Hood, Texas: On 15 January 1942 the War Department announced that they had purchased of 108,000 acres of land to build an army camp. This was to be named Camp Hood, after General John Bell Hood, the "Fighting General" of the famous " Texas Brigade" of the Confederate Army of North Virginia. Camp Hood was officially opened on 18 September 1942 with Under Secretary of War Robert Patterson as the main speaker at the opening ceremonies. The cost of building Camp Hood was $84,000,000. " Its a Fact "

Ft. Knox, Kentucky: Ft. Knox is a Certified City, covers 109,054 acres, equivalent to 170.4 square miles. It is the sixth largest urban community in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, having a daytime population of 29,000 plus people. Has the largest independent school system among Army posts in the Continental U.S. Also among many other things has a street named " Hell On Wheels Div Rd.". For all of you that were assigned to take basic training at Ft. Knox, remember " Agony Hill " and " Misery Hill " they still remain. " Its a Fact ".

A Military Heritage: ( The Internet ) Many people assume the Internet is the brainchild of Silicon Valley. Actually, the driving force behind the Internet's creation was the U.S. Military during the Cold War. 4 October 1957, launch of the satellite Sputnik convinced America that its technologies needed beefing up. A key deficiency, military and civilian forces couldn't communicate during and after a nuclear war. To find the answers to this and other related issues, The Department of Defense launched the Advance Research Project Agency (ARPA) to conduct high-tech research. At the time, computers were generally seen as big calculators. Not so for one J.C.R. Licklider. An MIT professor and one of the ARPA'S early leaders, he envisioned a web of inter-connected computers feeding information to each other. Many could be destroyed in a nuclear attack, and still the larger communications system would remain intact. The idea became a reality in 1969 when four universities involved in ARPA projects had their computers connected. By 1972, they were sending e-mail to each other. The Internet was born. For more on the military's role in creating the Internet, read: " The Ancient History of the Internet" by Edwin Diamond and Stephen Bates in American Heritage, October 1995; and "Where Wizards stay up late", and ** "The Origins of the Internet" by Katie and Matthew Lyon, Simon & Schuster, 1996. ** Check our book store for this one. "Its a Fact"

Servicewomen Overseas: World War 1 (1917-18) Women in combat zone 10,000, World War 11 (1941-45) 18,000, Korean War (1950-53) 600, Vietnam War (1964-73) 7,500 Grenada (1983) 116, Panama (1989) 700, Persian Gulf (1991) 33,365, Somalia (1992-94) 300 ,Haiti (1994-95) 400, Bosnia (1996-97) 3,000. "Its a Fact".

Women in Military Service Memorial: The nation’s 1.8 million female armed forces vets were honored by this Memorial in October 1997. The Memorial sits near Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. They have on their registry the names of over 150,000 names of American service women. The memorial especially honors the women who died in war. During WW 1 more than 200 Army nurses and 57 Navy yeoman (female) died in the line of duty, most from them influenza epidemic. In WW 11 201 Army nurses died on foreign shores---16 were killed as a result of direct enemy action. Six nurses were KIA at Anzio, Italy, alone, and an additional six were killed off the Leyte Island on 28 April 1945, when a kamikaze hit the hospital ship Comfort. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial already lists the names of eight nurses, killed in that war, one of whom died of shrapnel wounds. Hostile action in the 1991 Persian Gulf War claimed the life of five servicewomen. "Its a Fact".

26-31 July 1944: In this 6 days( inclusive) the 2nd Armored Division fought elements of Fourteen German divisions and one Battle Group, They were as follows: 2nd Panzer Div. ( was known as  Das Reich.)  1st SS Panzer Div.,( was known as  Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler )10th SS Panzer Div., 17th SS Panzer Div. ,130 Panzer Lehr Div. , 116th Panzer Div., 5th Parachute Div., 84th, 91st, 243rd, 266th, 275th, 353rd, Infantry Div. and the Battle Group Kentner 30. The above listed units had over 5000 ( five thousand) casualties and 5000 prisoners taken in this 6 days. The 2nd Armored Divisions losses were around 600 casualties. wounded or KIA or MIA). "Its a Fact"

Blood and Guts: This nickname was given to General George S. Patton at Ft. Benning, Ga. .in 1940. This was the result of officers training school when General Patton was the Commanding General of the 2nd Armored. He had been telling the officers that they would soon be up to their necks in blood and guts, Some of the soldiers at that time were trying to figure out whether it was his guts and their blood or his blood and their guts." Its A Fact "

Who was Pedro: He was a Russian boy of about 14 that was picked up by "A" Co. 82nd Recon Bn. 2nd Armored Div. He was virtually " adopted by our Mess Sgt. Joe Schafer, Joe planned on bringing him home We had captured a group of German soldiers in August of 1944, he was with them as a prisoner, and badly abused by them. He worked in battalion headquarters as a cook& helper until Berlin and the Russians came to take him away, where is Pedro now ? " Its A Fact "

American soldiers washing uniforms: Most all men in the 2nd Armored Division , at least in the tank and reconnaissance battalion we used gasoline to wash their clothes most of the time. Other times we used GI soap, it was a brown large bar, the equivalent of what was OK soap in the 50's. " Its a Fact "

German soldiers washing uniforms: Most of the men in the German army washed their clothes in a Carbonic acid solution which had a distinct odor to it. If you were on a patrol you could generally smell this scent before you would run into the them if the wind was blowing the right way, so you could get prepared. " Its a Fact "

March 1945 through 30 April 1945: The 2nd Armored Division captured an estimated 48,578 prisoners and killed estimated 400 German troops. Destroyed or captured 121 aircraft, over 618 trucks and over 100 tanks of all descriptions and much more. " Its a Fact "

Fuel: The 2nd Armored Division used sixty thousand gallons a day in the advance across northern Europe in WW 2. This includes the gas we used to wash our clothes. Its a Fact"

SNAFU: In the military service means : "situation normal all fouled up." This is the polite version of the word SNAFU.


Because of several different versions of the facts concerning Jeeps, we print all we receive, you be the judge which do you agree with,  " is a fact " 

The American army JEEP got its name in an unusual manner.  The vehicle produced by the Willy's Automobile Corp for the military had a designation as a General Purpose vehicle and was given the army nomenclature "GP" which was phonetically called a "GeePpp". Contributed by Ralph N. Butera

Different  version:  , we welcome all comment on this difference of the facts 'about the Jeep. We called them Peeps in our Reconnaissance Co.  Do you have another explanation about the Jeep, or do you know any other persons that called them a "Peep". 

General Patton called his Jeep a Peep in his book "War as I Knew It" and another story for the Jeep's name comes from the cartoon character named  "Joe the Jeep" a animal that could do anything it wanted. Submitted by  SFC  Mark Ounan U. S. Army.

Ardennes Offensive ( Battle of the Bulge) : There were 600,000 Americans involved in the fighting there, including 29 divisions, 6 mechanized cavalry groups, and the equivalent of 3 separate regiments-casualties totaled around 87,000, of which 15,000 were captured and 19,000 killed. Among the British -2 divisions and 3 brigades-casualties total 1400, of which just over 200 were killed. The Germans employing close to 500,000 men-including 28 divisions and 3 brigades-lost 100,000 killed, wounded, and captured. " Its a Fact "

Dog Robber: This is what they called an officer's orderly, a dog robber would keep the officer's shoes shined and drive him around. Keep up his wardrobe and ran errands for the officer." Its a Fact"

Berlin: What dignitaries did the 2nd Armored Division stand in review for while in Berlin, July 1945. President Truman, Prime Minister Winston Churchill, General George S. Patton Jr. , Prime Minister Clement Atlee, Chief of Staff Gen. George Marshall, and many more. "Its a Fact"

City of Magdeburg: City was captured on 17-18 April 1945 in an attack coordinated with the 30th Infantry Division. Co. "A", 82nd Recon.of the 2nd Armored Division spent one night in Magdeburg, then withdrew back across the Elbe river west. " Its a Fact "

2nd Armored Division: The first American troops to occupy the city of Berlin in July 1945 through about 15 August 45 for approximately 45 days. The Russians had stripped the city of all production machinery from the factories and other valuable things.." Its a Fact "

Watches & Cigarettes: Watches were selling in Berlin in early July of 1945 for about $600.00 invasion money, Cigarettes for $300 to $400 dollars a carton, these price dropped sharply as the month passed. But you were only allowed to send your pay home, and no more. The Russians had lots of money, just getting paid their back pay, using same money as we did. " Its a Fact "

Soldbuch  ( Soldiers Book) Was the German soldier's personal identification and compact personnel file that he was expected to have with him at all times. It contained dates of his promotions, awards, and medals, clothing and equipment issued, military assignments, leave when longer than 5 days, name of the hospital and length of stay, religious affiliation, occupation, blood type, all physical characteristics, name and address of spouse, parents, or relatives and fiancée. The Soldbuch was the soldier's identity since it contained every essential piece of information about him and his service career." Its a Fact "

"Jerry" can: The British in Africa while fighting the Germans, copied the sturdy German water can, because the one they used leaked. Then they called it the "Jerry" can, it held 4 and 1/2 gallons of liquid and was used extensively by the British for two generations." Its a Fact "

Mess Sergeants. In the early days in 1940 and 1941 and before, Mess Sgt. were paid so much for each enlisted man. They would buy the supplies to feed the men that eat at their mess hall, out of money the quartermaster gave them. Finally due to some of the Mess Sergeants. getting into poker games and otherwise using the money for other purposes and losing the money. You can imagine if he had no money the men would be underfed. The Army decided to do away with this practice. The men found out that meals were not as good after this change was made. You can link to our new Mess Hall Page here "The Mess Hall" Its a Fact "

K-ration: Charles Wilson ( died 9/98 he was 83 yrs old ), the man who helped to develop the K rations that fed soldiers from WW 2 through the Vietnam War. He was an Army Captain assigned to the Quartermaster Corps Subsistence and Research Laboratory in Chicago. Charles Wilson was a member of the team that developed the K-ration in 1945. The tin can entrees were concoctions of items such as a bacon and cheese. Included in the packages were powered tea, coffee or lemonade, chocolate, and always cigarettes. " Its a Fact "

United States war losses: U.S. WW 2 total: length of conflict 3 years. 8 months, casualties were approximately 884,143. Korean Conflict: length of conflict 3 years and 7 months, casualties 114,729. 33, 629 American's were killed in action and 3, 262 were killed in non hostile causes. Total 36, 914. Vietnam War US: length of conflict 19 years, casualties 134, 932. Around 87,000 US service personnel casualties in the Ardennes Offensive.( Bulge ) In WW 2 a total of 50,000,000 lost their lives." Its A Fact "

U-Boat Fuel: A U-boat was developed by Germany that burned Peroxide as a fuel toward the end of the WW 2. By the end of the war they had launched 1900 submarines, of which 1150 were commissioned. "Its A Fact"

Kurt Waldheim: It is reported that former U.N. Secretary-General Kurt Waldheim an alleged Nazi war criminal draws an annual pension from the U.N. $102,000 dollars a year." Its A Fact "

Goldbrick: A soldier who tries to get out of his duty, and is lazy. " Its A Fact "

World War 2, Infantry: The infantry absorbed the greatest number of casualties 80% of Army killed in action. In WW 2 there were 68 Combat Divisions deployed in the European Theater of Operations. Those infantry, armored, airborne, mountain divisions suffered 78% of all Army casualties sustained in the theater. Riflemen in the infantry divisions suffered 95% of its casualties. " Its A Fact "

Time in combat: Maximum time for the average infantryman to be in combat to reach the breaking point 200 days. infantry men are often referred to as " grunts." " Its a Fact "

Polish Troops in Italy: At the Monastery in Cassino, Italy. Polish troops suffered loss of over 4000 men, May of 1944. An inscription reads at the cemetery nearby the following:

We Polish solders, For our freedom and yours,

Have given our souls to God, Our bodies to the soil of Italy,

And our hearts to Poland..

A tragic loss of Polish lives. The Polish people paid a heavy price for the search for freedom, during World War 2 in Europe. The Polish civilians were moved around to different places called DP ( displaced people ) camps in Germany and even their own country." Its a Fact "

General Gallieni: He was a French General in WW 1. Gen. Gallieni ordered gendarmes to flag down all the taxis and send them to the railroad station and the squares where French troops were waiting to go to Marne battlefield to fight and transport the troops to the front lines. There was a crucial shortage of troops at the front due to a train derailing and not being able to reinforce the beleaguered front line troops." Its A Fact ".

KP: This stands for Kitchen Police or plain words just clean up people, they would be assigned to duty in the kitchen to keep it policed up or cleaned up. They would assign recruits to this by the order of there name on the roster, as duty, or punishment in some cases. Also they would peel potatoes mop floor, serve food. anything that was work in the kitchen they did it." Its a Fact "

Ardennes Offensive: In a few history books reference is made to the First U.S. Army closing the gap with the Third U.S. Army at Houffalize. One such reference is made in the book, " A History of the Second United States Armored Division ". This book writes that Lt. Baker, "B" Co., 82nd Reconnaissance Battalion , 2nd Armored Division met a patrol of the Third Army in the area. Yet another book " Second Armored Division History " wrote another story. The facts are as follows: This is the exact words of the Co. "A" morning report. Quote: Achouffe, Belgium, Company remains at present location, 3rd platoon outposted along the Ourtner river, At 0900A, 16 Jan 1945 the second platoon contacted elements of the 11th Armored Div.., thereby closing the gap between the 1st U.S. Army and the 3rd U.S. Army, Weather clear and cold, morale excellent. Also we have "A" CO's. exact radio transcript which is as follows: Quote: At 0958A-16 Jan 1945 from Co. "A" to Battalion -- We have made contact with the 11th Armored Division, It is their Reconnaissance Squadron. The Combat Narrative also reports the same as just stated. It was not Lt. Baker from "B" Company it was Lt. Baker from "A" Company, his driver also was there Charles Pepe, also others from "A" Company's 2nd platoon. " Its A Fact "

Concentration camps: They were established early in France by the Vichy Government.. First Jews left by train for Auschwitz on 27 March 1942, there were 1112 men aged between 20 and 48, in the first group. This was done by Petain"s Vichy Government and you could not disguise the fact that it was a legitimate administration set in place by the elected members of both houses of parliament. The concentration camp structure and the control of foreigners, which later particularly affected Jews, was in place before the war started. Thousands of Jews were gathered, and sent to Germany to be put to death. France is not an innocent bystander in this tragedy." Its A Fact " ( For more on this go to Armored Forces links at the bottom of the page. and enter into the " Holocaust" site.)

The Swiss government: Imprisoned thousands of Jewish refugees when they were fleeing Nazi Germany into that country and confined by the Swiss in special camps, kept in grim, sometimes cruel conditions behind barbed wire at gunpoint and forced to work for little or no pay. Many families were forcibly separated by police--including in some cases infants from their mothers, the study says, a " special Jew-tax " was levied on rich Jews, but on Christians or refugees of other faiths. We accept the facts stated above to be true.( excerpts from an article printed the Tampa Tribune, dated January 13, 1998. This is a current reported story.

War correspondents, reporters: Press people run around all bundled up in the Ardennes Offensive in peeps (jeeps), with drivers and sometimes a cameraman. ( we did not have decent winter clothes, most news people wore fur lined overcoats, jackets, and caps) Most press people picked the best places to stay in a safe, warm place, generally not in a foxhole.( If you had your choice would you stay in a foxhole) They could withdraw when the going was rough, we had no choice. I do not ever remember seeing one when we were on the move and advancing. At times we were 20 to 60 miles in front of the main force. The stories looked good in print and they got paid well for them. There were many good journalist, there were some not so good. " Its a Fact "

Anzio, Italy: A decision to invade at Anzio cost the allies 7,000 KIA, 36,000 more were wounded, or missing in action, 44,000 other causes, non-battle injuries and sickness. (Combat fatigue). Fifth Army losses: from Jan to 4 June 1944 total U.S. 47,345. British losses: 27,137, French Losses: 20,005 total KIA all forces 15, 887. wounded 65, 019, missing 13,677. " Its a Fact "

SOS (Sh-t on a shingle): Every soldier knows about this meal and here is how it is made. What to do and how to cook: 1 /12 teaspoon vegetable oil. 1/2 lb. very lean ground beef, 2 large onions (chopped) 1/4 bell pepper (chopped) , put in skillet and cook until all is tender, when done, drain liquid off. while this is cooking take 3 tablespoons of flour and mix in a glass with cold water, until dissolved, add salt and pepper to this just a dash of each . Mix into the meat you have just cooked and add 1 additional 1/2 glass of milk and season to taste, (you can add a bouillon cube to flavor), stirring constantly, until it thickens, if thickens too much add more water to thin some. Toast bread and pour SOS on the toast, its good, try it. The above recipes please try at your own risk, if you like them tell us, we welcome your comments. The army served a lot of this SOS.

Fog Oil: A chemical compound burned in huge generators that were place in certain positions along the Rhine, the oil produced a smoke screen 50 or miles long and up to a mile wide. Across the river the Germans were confused and could not see what was going on across the river with the Allies, in WW 2. " Its A Fact "

Armored Common Sense: When an Armored column is on the attack and runs into an insurmountable force the saying is as follows: " Haul a__ or Bypass " Unless ordered to do otherwise. " Its A Fact "

Besides the Gulf War, the U.S. has engaged in nine overseas campaigns since the Vietnam era ended. The 253,021 Americans who served and the 462 who died waging them deserve to be remembered along with Persian Gulf veterans.
El Salvador 1981-82 5,000 9 35 11
Lebanon 1983-87 2,000* 266 169 2
Grenada 1983 20,000 10 152 9
Libya 1986 23,000 2 0 0
Persian Gulf 18 Feb 1991 and 28 Feb 1991: 16,800 11+ 10 14
USS Stark 1987 221 37 21 0
Panama 1989-90 27,000 23 240 18
Somalia 1992-94 87,000 30 175 14
Haiti 1994-95 22,000 1 3 2
Bosnia** 1996-97 50,000 1 6 11
TOTAL   253.021 381 811 81
KIA includes all hostile deaths.
*Ashore in Beirut.
**Bosnia only. Does not include Croatia, Macedonia, airspace or Adriatic Sea.

"Its a Fact"

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