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US Army

The 275th Engineer Combat Battalion in the Bulge

 

The 275th Engineer Combat Battalion
In the Bulge 
 
The Company “C”, 275th Engineer Combat Battalion, entered the Battle of the Bulge on December 24, 1944, where we constructed a bailey bridge under the cover of darkness at Barvaux, Belgium.  This may have been the first Bailey bridge constructed in the Battle of the Bulge.
 
We went into a terrible battle at Soy, Belgium, on December 16, 1944.  We had three soldiers killed and one soldier wounded while we were laying mine fields to protect our troops.  This was a battle that I will never forget.  Nor will I forget the strong German army, the cold weather, the loss of life, or the hard fighting that was done by the American soldiers.  This will be on my mind for the rest of my life.
 

We were able to move to LaForge, Belgium, on December 28, 1944, and we ate our Christmas dinner there the next day.  We did combat work with the 291st Infantry Regiment and cleared some of the roads while we were in this area.  We moved to La Reid, Belgium, on January 1, 1945, in a blizzard with temperatures well below zero.  We worked with the 291st Infantry Regiment for the most part while we were here.  We did some work when the weather would allow us to do so.

 
We moved to Basse Bodeux, Belgium on January 10, 1945, to do road work on two small roads that we thought we might be able to use.  We also removed damaged vehicles from the roads.  The German army had begun to move toward Grand Halleux, Belgium.  The 291st Infantry Regiment had the push on them day and night.
 

We moved toward Grand Halleux, Belgium on January 15, 1945.  The German held the high ground.This was one of the terrible battles.  The fighting raged for four days.  The loss of American live was tremendous.  The Germans moved toward Vielsalm, Belgium.

 

We moved to Vielsalm, Belgium, on January 19, 1945.  The German army did not fight hard for Vielsalm.  However, they left the area heavily mined.  They moved to where they were when they began the Battle of the Bulge.  The Germans suffered great losses, both in equipment and men and were badly beaten by the United States forces.

 

It is my opinion that any soldier who didn’t get killed or wounded in the Battle of the Bulge has to feel very good.  I am so thankful that we had only four men killed in this historic battle.  I know in some cases almost entire companies were destroyed.  We came through this battle ready to fight another day.

 

Source: Bulge Bugle, February 1996

By Captain Leo E. WALKER

"C" Company

275th Engineer Combat Bn.

75th Infantry Division

Campaigns

Battle of the Bulge,

Belgium