Letter from GEN. MARK W. CLARK. U.S.A. RET.. to 755th for their
The Following is from a book by GENE HUEBNER and is a memorial to the men of the 755 TANK BATTALION who under the Free French Army command of Marshall Bonjour and General Juin's FEC Goumiers who were killed in action and to the survivors and MIA's who fought a very unusual war against The German General, Albert Kesselring, German Army World War II.
The Italian Campaign lasted two years nine months and twenty one days. Far too long a combat zone The loss to the allied armies was far too many. The exact count is not known. The 755 Tank BN spent 17 months in hard fought combat, two months reorganizing and getting new Tanks, equipment and men to full combat strength. We saw five major campaigns, lost approximately 560 men and officers. 225 men were killed in actions, 275 men were injured, wounded or taken captive. We lost approximately 75 percent of the original 750 men while assigned to in-tank support. The 755 was the most decorated with more French citations than any other Tank Battalion in the history of the U.S.
Army 25th division 25 Div. Infantry Division ARMOR Units Note: Five armor units have been assigned to the 25th Division during the period 1949 through 1972. For an explanation of how Armor units are currently organized see our Distinctive Unit Insignia Unit First Assigned to Unit History 755 tank 79th Tank Battalion "Duces Semper" Leaders Always March 1949
Constituted 13 January 1941 in the Regular Army as the 75th Tank Battalion (Medium). Redesignated 8 May, 1941 as the 755th Tank Battalion (Medium. Activated on 1 June 1941 at Camp Bowie, Texas. Assigned to the 1st Tank Group,
The 755th Tank Battalion entered combat on 15 December 1943 during the Naples-Foggia Campaign in support of the 45th Infantry Division near Venafro Italy. On 9 January 1944 the 755th was reassigned to the Fifth Army and attached to the French Expeditionary Corps. The battalion supported French infantry units in the breaking of the German Winter Line near Cassino. For its support of French forces during the Rome-Arno Campaign the 755th received two awards of the French Croix de Guerre.
The 755th went on to participate in the North Apennines and Po Valley Campaigns. The 755th was inactivated near Florence, Italy on 8 September 1945.
World War II
French Croix de Guerre with Palm, World War II, Streamer embroidered CENTRAL ITALY (775th Tank Bn. cited for period 11 May -23 Jun 1944; DA GO 43 1950)
French Croix de Guerre with Gold Star, World War II, Streamer embroidered ITALY (775th Tank Bn. cited for period 1 Dec. 1943 - 31 July 1944, DA GO 43 1950)
755 TANK BATTALION PO RIVER CAMPAIGN
CHANGING TO AN AMPHIBIOUS BATTALION
Report By Maj. Hinson and Capt. Schiebel Junket to
THE 755TH TANK BN. AMPHIBIOUS OPERATIONS IN ITALY
PO RIVER CAMPAIGN
Report of action during period 11 April to 2 May 1945
By JOSEPH GARRITY
"Eight Army News" Reporter
5TH ARMY SUMMARY
In Memory of Lt. Col. Herb Fowler
Steve Cole has a site covering the Italian Campaign history;
Another site that covering the Italian Campaign
Times Republican Online
Croix de Guerre,CEF CP. 27 may 1944
Colonel Bon jour C.O., 3rd Regiment de
Spahis Algertian de Reconnaissance
Col. Cronk, C.O. 2nd Armored Group
C.G. 3rd DIA
As the 755 Tank Battalion leaves my Troupment, I am happy to express my great satisfaction for the manner in which the different companies fulfilled the missions which were given to them.
Fifteen days of combat have retightened our bonds of good comradeship which already existed between the cadres and men of the 755th Tank Battalion and the offices and men of the 3rd Regiment de Spahis Algeriens de Reconnaissance at the end of the battles in the valley of Saint Elia, Belmonte and the Terelle road.
For the period of our victorious offensive which has just terminated, I wish to report the excellent training and effective shooting of the Assault Gun platoon of the 755th Tank Battalion.
On the afternoon of 24 May, our infantry attacked the wooded hill, 271, and the wooded heights to the east which proved to be great barriers against the destruction of the enemy pill boxes and for stopping counter-attacks.
Two squadrons of my Regiment were sent afoot to covert our North-East flank with the help of a Medium tank platoon, a platoon of lights tanks, supported of Tank Destroyers of the 7th RCA.
Starting at 1600 hrs. the enemy began a strong action against this flank. Artillery fire from tanks was coming from between Colle Grande and Colle Arduino, pinning the defenders to the ground, while enemy infantry was advancing down the valley covered by very high wheat and vines, were not stopped by our fire under less than 50 yards.
Meanwhile, the Battalion was no longer under my orders, the Assault Gun platoon continued supporting us. Alerted, it fired its first salvo on the tanks and set two on fire on the crest south east of Colle Grande, Continuing its observed firing, it crushed the enemy infantry by its barrages in the valley, it fire advancing progressively in front of our positions and responded precisely to our requirements for almost three hours.
We can definitely say at the end of the afternoon that, without the help of the Assault Gun platoon, 755th Tank Battalion, my squadron would not have been able to hold their position and fulfill this very important Division mission.
I ask you to please express my thanks and covey my congratulations to-
Lieutenant Branan, platoon leader,
Lieutenant Stratford, Artillery officer,
Lieutenant Hudson, his assistant
who were the artisans of this beautiful action.