106th After Action Report
HEADQUARTERS 106TH INFANTRY DIVISION
APO #443, U. S. ARMY
1 May 1945
SUBJECT: Report After Action
TO : The Adjutant General, U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.
Section 1 ------------------- Authority
Section II ------------------- Introduction
Section III ------------------ Report After Action
Section IV ------------------ Annexes
ANNEXES: 1. Personnel
3. Supply and Evacuation
4. Military Government
5. FO #5, 106 Inf Div, 30 Mar 45
6. FO #6, 106 Inf Div, 20 Mar 45
7. FO #7, 106 Inf Div, 3 Apr 45
8. FO #8, 106 Inf Div, 16 Apr 45
9. FO #9, 106 Inf Div, 18 Apr 45
10. FO #10, 106 Inf Div, 19 Apr 45
11. FO #11, 106 Inf Div, 20 Apr 45
12. FO #12, 106 Inf Div, 28 Apr 45
13. FO #13, 106 Inf Div, 29 Apr 45
14. Tng Memo #6, 106 Inf Div, 21 Mar 45
15. Tng Memo #10, 106 Inf Div, 8 Apr 45
SECTION - AUTHORITY
In compliance with paragraph 10, AR 345-105, as changed by changes #4, this report by the 106th Infantry Division for 1 April 1945 - 30 April 1945 is submitted.
SECTION II - INTRODUCTION
1. Command: During the time covered by this report the 106th Infantry Division operated under the following headquarters and commanders.
a. Fifteenth U. S. Army - Lt Gen L. T. GEROW
b. 106 Inf Div - Maj Gen D. A. STROH
2. Composition of the 106th Infantry Division
b. Organic (Attached to 66th Infantry Division as of 15 Apr 45).
c. Attached (As of 16 Mar 45)
3. This operation report covers the activities of the 106th Infantry Division during the period 312400 March 1945 to 302400 April 1945.
The following maps were used:
EUROPE Road Map Series, scale 1:1,000,000, FRANCE & GERMANY
GERMANY Road Map, scale 1:100,000
CENTRAL EUROPE, scale 1:100,000, GSGS 4416 - S1, S2, T2
GERMANY, scale 1:250,000, GSGS 4346 - K51, K52
SECTION III - REPORT AFTER ACTION
ACTIVITIES OF THE 106TH INFANTRY DIVISION FROM 312400 MARCH 1945 TO 302400 APRIL 1945
During the period 1 April 1945 to 30 April 1945, inclusive, the 106th Infantry Division was engaged in four (4) separate missions, namely:
1. To reconstitute and train those units of the 106th Infantry Division destroyed during combat in the ARDENNES in December 1944, preparing those units in the shortest possible time for participation with the remainder of the Division in future operational missions.
2. To train and prepare the remainder of the 106th Infantry Division and attached units, in the shortest possible time, for the next operational mission.
3. To prepare to reinforce the 66th Infantry Division on their call and to relieve that Division in the ST NAZAIRE and LORIENT sectors effective not later than 5 May 1945, containing the enemy garrisons in ST NAZAIRE and LORIENT, FRANCE.
4. To guard prisoners of war in GERMANY while attached to the Communications Zone.
Reconstitution of the 422d and 423d Infantry Regiments, 589th and 590 Field Artillery Battalions and the 106th Reconnaissance Troop
The 106th Infantry Division was directed to reconstitute and train the 422d and 423d Infantry, 589th and 590th Field Artillery Battalions and the 106th Reconnaissance Troop by orders, Fifteenth U. S. Army, 14 March 1945.
During the month of March, preparations and plans were made for obtaining the enlisted and officer cadres, training areas and equipment and for receiving, classifying and assigning reinforcements. It was decided by Fifteenth U. S. Army that the 106th Infantry Division could best perform this mission by moving to the vicinity of RENNES, FRANCE. The progress in accomplishing the mission is outlined below:
1-3 April - A reception group, consisting of Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 106th Division Artillery, the 591st Field Artillery Battalion, part of Division Headquarters, the cadre from the 424th Infantry, 591st and 592d Field Artillery Battalions, and all remaining officers and men from the reconstituted units, moved to RENNES, FRANCE. This group proceeded to establish facilities for receiving reinforcements and for the remainder of the division. Three hundred sixty-five (365) men to cadre the 422d and 423d Infantry, 589th and 590th Field Artillery Battalions, were received from the units attached to the division, namely the 3rd and 159th Infantry, 401st and 627th Field Artillery Battalions. Certain key officers for these units were received.
4 April - Preparation of tent camps at the RENNES, FRANCE Airport was started.
5 April - Twenty (20) man cadre for the 106th Reconnaissance Troop arrived vicinity RENNES, FRANCE.
6 April - 106th Infantry Division closed in and division headquarters was established at RENNES, FRANCE.
6-13 April - The bulk of a total of six thousand sis hundred and six (6,606) filler reinforcements was received from Reinforcement Training Centers. Two thousand two hundred twenty seven (2,227) of these reinforcements had basic infantry training in Infantry Reinforcement Training Centers in the United States. The remaining reinforcements were from other branches of the service and had received a six-week (6) infantry course at Reinforcement Training Centers in the European Theater of Operations. Filler reinforcements continued to be received until 20 April.
14 April - A reconstitution ceremony was held, at which the colors, standards and guidons of the units were transferred from the veterans of the 106th Infantry Division to the reconstituted units.
15 April - 422d and 423d Infantry, 589th and 590th Field Artillery Battalions and the 106th Reconnaissance Troop were attached to the 66th Infantry Division.
16-21 April - Training of the reconstituted units started under the 106th Division's training program, as prescribed by Training Memorandum #10, this headquarters, 8 April 1945, (Annex #15, attached). Preparations were made for turning over the training activities to the 66th Infantry Division. A training cadre under the Assistant to the Division Commander, 106th Infantry Division, was selected and attached to the 66th Infantry Division to assist in the supervision of training.
22 April - Reconstituted units moved from RENNES, FRANCE to COETQUIDAN, FRANCE, for training.
The 106th Infantry Division cleared RENNES, FRANCE, for a new mission in GERMANY.
23-30 April - Training of the reconstituted units continued at COETQUIDAN, FRANCE, under the supervision of the 66th Infantry Division and the 106th Infantry Division training cadre.
Some of the special problems encountered in reconstituting and training these units, and the steps taken to overcome the are:
1. The lack of proper sequence in receiving key officers, other officers and reinforcements for the units. This problem was partially solved by the temporary assignment of key personnel from other units of the division to training assignments until sufficient officers were received. A special retention group was sent early to RENNES, FRANCE, to receive filler reinforcements.
2. The limited number of officers actually received. To over come this difficulty some officers from other units of the division were attached to the reconstituted units so as to perform the training mission as adequately as possible.
3. The lack of available training areas. After considerable correspondence and conferences, some extension of training areas in the vicinity of the RENNES Airport was obtained. Permission was also received to use CAMP COETQUIDAN until 15 Map. These measures were only a partial solution to this problem.
4. The lack of certain items of equipment. The bulk of the equipment for the reconstituted units arrived prior to start of training. However, certain essential items, such as anti-tank guns and 105mm howitzers were not shipped in time. Temporary loan of equipment by the rest of the division eased this problem considerably. In general, sufficient equipment had arrived by the end of the month so as not to handicap seriously the training during the following month.
Training and preparation of the 106th Infantry Division and attached units, in the shortest possible time, for the next operational mission.
As directed by the Fifteenth U. S. Army, the 106th Infantry Division composed of Division Headquarters and Special Troops, Division Artillery (less 589th and 590th Field Artillery Battalions), 424th Infantry, 331st Medical Battalion, 81st Engineer (C) Battalion, and with the 3d and 159th Infantry, 401st and 627h Field Artillery Battalions attached, initiated during the month an intensive training program to prepare the division for its next operational mission. The division was directed to move to the vicinity of RENNES, FRANCE, and to conduct this training concurrently with the training of the reconstituted units.
Training Memorandum #6, this headquarters, 21 March 1945, (Annex #14, attached) was prepared to accomplish this mission. The progress in accomplishing this mission is as follows:
1-5 April - Plans were perfected for a four-week (4) training program to be started 9 April 1945 in accordance with Training Memorandum #6, this headquarters, 21 March 1945, (Annex #14, attached). An advance detachment proceeded to RENNES, FRANCE, to establish bivouacs and prepare training areas for the units involved.
6 April - The 106th Infantry Division Command Post opened in RENNES, FRANCE.
6-8 April - Attached units arrived in the vicinity of RENNES, FRANCE. Establishment of tent camps, assignment of training areas, preparation of range schedules and other preparatory work completed.
9 April - The four-week (4) training program, in accordance with Training Memorandum #6, this headquarters, 21 March 1945, (Annex #14, attached) was initiated.
9-14 April - Prescribed training was in progress. 424th Infantry conducted firing for all personnel on the Combat Training Ranges at COETQUIDAN, FRANCE.
15 April - Warning orders were received from higher headquarters that the 106th Infantry Division and attached units (less the reconstituted units) would receive immediately another mission which would require an early cessation of training and movement to GERMANY.
16-21 April - Preparations for move completed. Some training continued under approved program. 159th Infantry departed for GERMANY. 3d Infantry conducted firing for all personnel at COETQUIDAN, FRANCE.
22 April - 106th Infantry Division and attached units cleared the RENNES area for a mission in GERMANY, thus having to suspend the original training program.
Some of the special problems encountered during this training period and steps taken to overcome them are:
1. Lack of available training areas and training aids. By the time training was suspended, arrangements had been made to use CAMP COERQUIDAN with its ranges and other facilities until 15 May. Some additional training areas were obtained in the vicinity of RENNES and maximum use was planned of all equipment and training aids available.
2. Inadequate amount of training ammunition. Division Ordnance officers obtained the maximum training ammunition allowed by higher headquarters for this purpose. Firing schedules were modified to obtain best results from ammunition available.
Preparation to reinforce and relieve the 66th Infantry Division in the ST NAZAIRE and LORIENT sectors.
The 106th Infantry Division, with attached units, was ordered by the Fifteenth U. S. Army to make the necessary preparations to relieve the 66th Infantry Division in the ST NAZAIRE and LORIENT sectors not later than 5 May 1945. On 7 April the Fifteenth U. S> Army also ordered the 106th Infantry Division to be prepared to reinforce the 66th Infantry Division in the aforementioned sectors un the event of emergency. The progress in accomplishing this mission of the division is outlined below:
1-5 April - Preparations ere completed with Fifteenth U. S. Army to move the attached units, namely the 3d and 159th Infantry and the 401st and 627th Field Artillery Battalions, from their location, Camp Lucky Strike, Normandy Base Section, to bivouac areas vicinity RENNES, FRANCE.
Elements of the division and attached units, including advance parties, arrived in the bivouac area, vicinity RENNES, FRANCE.
6 April - 106th Infantry Division Command Post opened RENNES, FRANCE.
7-14 April - Upon arrival at RENNES, the Commanding General and staff officers of this division met with the corresponding officers of the 66th Infantry Division and started plans for the division to reinforce the 66th Infantry Division if needed and later to relieve the 66th Infantry Division and take over the sectors.
15-18 April - 627th Field Artillery Battalion was attached 15 April 1945, to the 66th Infantry Division and actively participated in combat in the ST NAZAIRE sector. Concurrently, the 3d Infantry, and later 159th Infantry, were placed on a five-hour (5) alert with the stipulation that one (1) battalion of the regiment be alerted to move within three (3) hours upon call by the 66th Infantry Division. These units actually constituted the bulk of the 66th Infantry Division reserve at the time. The units of the 106th Infantry Division were released from this alert and the 627th Field Artillery Battalion reverted to division control 18 April 1945.
19 April - 106th Infantry Division was relieved from the above mission by Letter of Instruction #16, Headquarters, Fifteenth U. S. Army, 19 April 1945.
No special problems were encountered in the preparations for taking over the ST NAZAIRE and LORIENT sectors from the 66th Infantry Division. Plans were well under way and the division would have been prepared to assume its next mission by 5 May 1945.
Guarding Prisoners of War in Germany
Information was received on 15 April 1945, from the Provost Marshal, European Theater of Operations, and from an Assistant G-3 SHAEF, that the 106th Infantry Division (less the 422d and 423d Infantry, 589th and 590th Field Artillery Battalions, and the 106th Reconnaissance Troop), with its attached units (3d and 159th Infantry and the 401st and 627th Field Artillery Battalions) had been designated to guard prisoners of war in Germany and that preparations for an early move to the east should be started. Additional information indicated that the enclosures to be assigned to the division were east of the Rhine, but it developed later that they were to the west of the Rhine, generally in the vicinity of BUIERICH, REMAGEN, BAD KREUZNACH, and MANNHEIM, GERMANY. For the accomplishment of this mission, the division was to be attached to the Communications Zone.
The progress in accomplishing this mission is outlined below:
15-16 April - The division was alerted to proceed from RENNES, FRANCE, to the vicinity of BAD KRENZNACH, GERMANY. Advance detachments proceeded to BONN and MANNHEIM, GERMANY, to prepare for the reception of the division and attached units in this area. Liaison was established with Advance Section and Continental Advance Section, Communications Zone, under whose control the prisoner of war temporary enclosures were to be constructed and initially opeated.
17 April - 159th Infantry departed RENNES, FRANCE, to proceed to BAD KREUZNACH, GERMANY. Destination for this regiment was later changed to REMAGEN, GERMANY.
18-21 April - Preparations for move of division completed. Billeting parties proceeded to vicinity STROMBERG and MANNHEIM, GERMANY.
22 April - Division Command Post closed RENNES, FRANCE and opened STROMBERG, GERMANY.
22-25 April - Remainder of 106th Infantry Division (less reconstituted units and Division Artillery), with attached units, moved to vicinity STROMBERG, GERMANY. Division Artillery moved to vicinity MANNHEIM, GERMANY. Last units closed in new areas 25 April 1045.
26-30 April - Units of the division were grouped for the accomplishment of mission of the division. Conferences were held with the Provost Marshal, European Theater of Operations and representatives of Advance Section and Continental Advance Section, Communications Zone. IT was determined that the enclosures to be guarded by the division were in four main groups, located from north to south, in the general vicinity of RHEINBERG, REMAGEN, BAD KREUZNACH and MANNHEIM, GERMANY. By the end of the
month the division had taken over the following enclosures: A-4 at BUIERICH, A-5 at SINZIG, A-6 at WINZENHEIM, A-12 at HEILESHEIM, and C-3 at HEILBRONN, GERMANY. As of 30 April 1945, these enclosures contained a total of 165,222 prisoners of war.
Some of the special problems encountered in accomplishing this mission and steps taken to solve them were:
1. The dispersion of the division over a front of 275 miles. This is a basic difficulty which required decentralizing many activities which are normally more closely controlled and the improvising of new means and methods of operating.
2. Insufficient transportation. All division transportation was utilized to the utmost, not only in supplying the scattered units of the division, but also in supplying the enclosures, since Communications Zone agencies were unable to supply and otherwise service all enclosures. Additional transportation was requested of Advance Section, Communications Zone.
3. Inadequate medical facilities. The 331st Medical Battalion allocated its own and borrowed medical personnel and facilities so as to take care of the first enclosure turned over to the division. Additional medical personnel, ambulances and field hospitals were requested.
4. Lack of critical items of supply and equipment. The service elements of the division contacted all agencies involved, and collected as much material as could be transported. There still remains a critical shortage of all types of equipment for prisoners of war enclosures.
5. Necessity for taking over and utilizing camps prior to their completion. Construction was continued by Communications Zone engineers after occupancy, and was also conducted by prisoners of war in the enclosures. The Division Engineer and the 81st Engineer (C) Battalion of the division assisted in this construction program with all of their available means.
6. Indefinite lines of demarcation between responsibilities involving several headquarters. Conferences between the division commander and the commanders of other organizations and agencies concerned gradually overcame many of these difficulties.
7. Rapid and unpredictable flow of prisoners into the various enclosures. Subordinate units were shifted to meet the flow of prisoners. Advance Section, Communications Zone, maintained contact with the armies so as to alleviate this difficulty as much as possible. It remained a critical problem, however.
8. Difficulties of communication resulting from the extent of the area covered by the division. Liaison was immediately established with all other organizations and agencies concerned and with subordinate units. The liaison planes of the Division Artillery and motor messengers were utilized. The division signal company is endeavoring to repair cables destroyed by combat and to install sufficient wire communications, although such a job is beyond its capacity. Radio communication was utilized extensively. The provisions of adequate communications remains a major problem in the accomplishment of this mission.
S E C R E T
: SECRET : HQ 106 INF DIV
:Auth: CD 106 Inf Div : RENNES, FRANCE
:Date: 16 Apr 45 : 162230 Apr 45
Maps: EUROPE Road Map Series, FRANCE and GERMANY, 1:1,000,000
1. Not applicable.
2. 159 Inf moved to BAD KREUZNACH, GERMANY by rail and Mtrs, 17 Apr 45.
3. a. 159 INF RAIL ELEMENTS: Move from BRUZ Marshalling Yards in three (3), forty (40) car, trains on 17 Apr 45 as follows:
Unit will designate train and car Comdrs.
b. 159 INF MTR ELEMENTS: Move from present bivouac area to BAD KREUZNACH, GERMANY, by route N-12 to LAVAL, N-157-LE MAN, N-23-Rd Jct B-157, N-157 ST CALAIS, EOUISAY, N-926-FONTAINE, N-10-CLOYES, CHATEAUDUN, BONNEVAL; (Bivouac on left side of N-10, head of Clm 1 mile south of CHARTRES), CHARTRES, N-188 ABLIS, ST ARNOULT. ROCKEFORT, LIMOURS, ORSAY, PALAISEAU, Rd Jct N-304-FONTENAY-TRESIGNY, N-304 ROZAY-EN-B, COURTACON, ESTERNAY, N-34 SEZANNE, SOMMESOUS, VITRY-LE-FRANCOIS, (Bivouac), N-4 ST DIZIER, LIGNY-EN-B, VOIS, TOUL, TCP-U, NANVY, N-74 CHATEAUSALINS, MORHANGE, PUTTELANGE, SARRE-GUEMINES, )Bivouac), BLLESKASTEL, ZWEIBIUCKEN, NR-10 HOMBURG, NR-40 LANDSTUHL, KAISERSLAUTERN, NR-40 to Rd Jct NR-48 left to TOCKENHAUS, HOCHSTATTEN, MUNSTER-A-ST, to destination. Head of Clm passes unit IP at 170600 Apr 45.
x. Mtr elements will bivouac night of 17-18 Apr 45 at CHARTRES, FRANCE; night of 18-19 Apr 45 at VITRY-LE-FRANCOIS, FRANCE; and night of 19-20 Apr 45 at SARREGUEMINES, FRANCE.
4. a. (1) Cl I: Units will arrive with one (1) days rations.
(2) Cl III:
(a) tanks and cans will be full on departure.
(b) Units will obtain 5400 gals gas and 160 gals oil at CHARTRES bivouac area; 6600 gals gas and 200 gals oil at VITRY-LE-FRANCOIS bivouac area.
(3) Div Engr will be responsible for water supply at bivouac areas.
b. EVAC: Co "B", 331 Med Bn will provide three (3) ambulances to accompany Mr Clm.
(1) Div PM will provide necessary Traf control from IP through RENNES, FRANCE>
(2) Local MPs will assist in controlling Traf in major towns.
(3) Convoy Cmdr will report ahead of convoy at TCP-U, NANCY, FRANCE, and TCP, KAISERSLAUTERN for further route verification and obey instructions given at TOPD.
5. a. Radio silence throughout move.
b. AA MGs will be prepared for action, half loaded and manned hroughout move.
c. 106 Inf Div SOP for Mtr Movements, dated 7 Mar 45, will be complied with throughout the move.
: SECRET : HQ 106 INF DIV
:Auth: CD 106 Inf Div : STROMBERG, GERMANY
:Date: 28 Apr 45 : 28 Apr 45
MAP: GERMANY Road Map, 1:500,000, Sheet 4.
1. Not applicable.
2. 3 INF moved vic BUDERICH, GERMANY, by Mtrs 30 Apr 45 to 2 May 45 and relieves 1st BN, 159 INF now guarding PWT #A-4.
3. a. 3 INF (Less Two (2) Bns):
Atchd: Co "A", 81 ENGR BN, Det, CO "A", 331 MED BN (Three (3) Ambulances)
Moves by Mtrs from present area vic WACKERNHEIM, GERMANY, 30 Apr 45, by Route N-9 to BINGEN to KOBLENZ to BONN to COLOGNE to NEUB to intersection with Route N-222. Route N-222 to intersection with Route N-57. Route N-57 to intersection with N-58. Route N-58 to destination, and immediately upon arrival, relieves 1st BN, 159 INF, now guarding PWTE #A-4. Head of Clm passes unit IP 300600 Apr 45.
b. 3 INF Mtrs (Less Sufficient Trans to Move 1st BN, 159 INF): Return from BUDERICH, GERMANY, 1 May 45, by route designated in Par 3 a, above, to present 3 INF area vic WACKERNHEIM, GERMANY. Head of Clm passes unit IP 010600 May 45.
c. 1st BN, 159 INF:
Atchd "Det Co "B", 331 MED BN (Two (2) Ambulances)
Moves from present area 1 May 45, utilizing 3 INF Trans to SINZIG, GERMANY, by route designated in Par 3 a, above. Head of Clm passes unit IP 010730 May 45. Immediately upon discharging personnel and equipment at SINZIG, GERMANY, 3 INF Trans will proceed by route designated in Par 3 , above, to present 3 INF area vic WACKERHHEIM, GERMANY.
d. Two (2) Bns, 3 INF:
Atchd: Move by Mtrs from present area 2 May 45, by route designated in Par 3 a, above, to vic BUDERICH, GERMANY. Head of Clm passes unit IP 020600 May 45.
x. (1) Memo, "SOP" for Mtr Movements", Hq 106 INF DIV, 7 Mar 45, will be complied with throughout moves.
(2) AA MGs will be prepared for action, half loaded and manned throughout moves.
4. a. (1) Cl I: 3 INF will arrive vic BUDERICH, GERMANY, with two (2) days rations.
(2) Cl III: Tanks and cans will be full on departure.
(1) Div PM will post route and provide necessary Traf control throughout Mtr moves.
(2) Local MPS will assist in controlling Traf through major towns.
c. TRANS: 40 trucks, 2 1/2 T, will be allocated to 3 INF by this Hq (G-4). These vehicles will return in convoy from BUDERICH, GERMANY, to BINGEN, GERMANY, 3 May 45, by route designated in Par 3 a. Head passes IP 0600.
5. a. Radio silence throughout moves.
b. 3 INF will report new CP locations and time of opening vic BUDERICH, GERMANY.
: SECRET : HQ 106 INF DIV
:Auth: CD 106 Inf Div : STROMBERG, GERMANY
:Date: 29 Apr 45 : 29 Apr 45
Page last revised
James D. West