Normandy Beachhead   T-O Patch

The Third Battalion — 358th Infantry Regiment - Hill 122

NormandyThe Third Battalion of the 358th Infantry Regiment-90th Division landed in France on D-Day plus 2. This was the start of almost six weeks of the most viscious type of warfare against some of the best of the German Wermacht. On July 8th, the Battalion moved into position on the southwestern slope of Hill 122 in the Foret de Mont Castre. It was here that the Battalion ran into the toughest fight it had in all the time it was in Europe and the one which earned it the Presidential Unit Citation. (Click here to read the Presidential Unit Citation.)

Hill 122 was the eyes of the enemy. This 400 foot rise was a bastion from which Caesar's Legions 2000 years ago repelled an ememy horde in the Gallic Wars. From a bald crest on the north, the forest stretched to the south in a trackless and jungle-like growth. Hill 122 dominated the Cherbourg peninsula and keyed the entire southward drive to break out of the hedgerow country.

FRANCEMAPOn the 11th of July the Third Battalion executed a bold, hazardous flanking maneuver cutting in the rear of the hill, hitting an enemy nerve - his main supply line. Instantly, the Battalion was hit from all sides by frenzied German Paratroopers and fanatical SS men. The most bitter hand to hand fighting the outfit was ever to see took place as the Battalion fought against vastly superior numbers of the enemy's best troops.

Eagle PatchOn the 12th of July, the entire Regimental front moved as the enemy withdrew leaving his dead on the once impregnable fortress. This was the day they finally emerged from the jungle-like woods after cracking the Mahlman Line - one of the enemy's greatest defensive positions. Editor's note: My father was wounded on July 13th, 1944.

Company Morning Report:

Record of Events
Morning Report13 July '44. Company engaging enemy in wooded area. Enemy offering terrific resistance. Mortar and artillery fire very heavy. Severe casualties suffered. Morale low. (Editor's Note: Special thanks go out to Norm Richards who provided these Company Morning Reports to me.) Click here to read Company Morning Report.