3rd ARMORED DIVISION "SPEARHEAD"

 

 

The mixture of insignia and distinctive colors of several arms incorporated in the Armored Force symbolize integrity and esprit. It is an interlocked ornament, found in Nordic monuments, composed of three torques: red for Artillery; blue for Infantry; and yellow for Cavalry. The symbols represent the characteristics of Armored Divisions; the tank track, mobility and armor protection; the cannon, firepower; and the red bolt of lightning, shock action.

 
ACTIVATED
15 April 1941, at Camp Beauregard, Louisiana.
 
 
ARRIVAL EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)
15 September 1943
 
 
ARRIVAL CONTINENT (FRANCE)
24 June 1944 ( D + 18 )
 
 
ENTERED COMBAT (ETO)
First elements 29 June 1944
Entire Division 9 July 1944
 
 
COMMANDING GENERAL (ETO)
 

( 15 September 1943 - 6 August 1944 )

( 5 September 1944 - 20 March 1945 ) ( 21 March 1945 - June 1945 )
Maj. Gen. Leroy H. Watson Maj. Gen. Maurice Rose Brig. Gen. Doyle O. Hickey
     
     
 

ORGANIC UNITS

   
Headquarters Company
Service Company
Combat Command A
Combat Command B
36th Armored Infantry Regiment
32nd Armored Regiment
33rd Armored Regiment
23rd Armored Engineer Battalion
83rd Armored Reconnaissance Battalion
143rd Armored Signal Company
 
3rd Armored Division Artillery
391st Armored Field Artillery Battalion (105 Howitzer)
67th Armored Field Artillery Battalion (105 Howitzer)
54th Armored Field Artillery Battalion (105 Howitzer)
   
3rd Armored Division Trains
3rd Ordnance Maintenance Battalion
Supply Battalion
45th Armored Medical Battalion
Military Police Platoon
Band
 
 

ASSIGNMENTS ( ETO )

 

  20 November 1943: VII Corps, First Army.

  8 February 1944: XIX Corps.

  15 July 1944: VII Corps.

  1 August 1944: VII Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group.

  19 December 1944: XVIII (Abn) Corps.

  20 December 1944: Attached, with the entire First Army, to the British 21st Army Group.

   23 December 1944: VII Corps.

  18 January 1945: VII Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group.

  1 May 1945: XIX Corps, Ninth Army, 12th Army Group.
 

 CAMPAIGNS (ETO)

 
  NORMANDY ( 6 June 1944 - 24 July 1944 ) (active)
  NORTHERN FRANCE ( 25 July 1944 - 14 September 1944 ) (active)
  RHINELAND ( 15 September 1944 - 21 March 1945 ) (active)
  ARDENNES-ALSACE ( 16 December 1944 - 25 January 1945 ) (active)
  CENTRAL EUROPE  ( 22 March 1945 - 11 May 1945 ) (active)
 
 

COMBAT CHRONICLE

The 3d Armored Division landed in Normandy and entered combat 29 June 1944, taking part in the hedgerow fighting. The Division broke out at Marigny and with the 1st Infantry Division swung south to Mayenne in a general exploitation of the St. Lo break-through. In August 1944, the Division participated in the heavy fighting involved in closing the Falaise Gap, pocketing the German Seventh Army. Six days later (25 August) the Division had cut across the Seine River, and was streaking through Meaux, Soissons, Laon, Mons, Namur, and Liege. Liege fell 8 September and Eupen on 11 September. The Division breached the Siegfried Line with the capture of Rotgen, 12 September, and continued a slow advance against heavy resistance, to the vicinity of Langerwehe. When the Battle of the Bulge broke, the Division was shifted to Houffalize, Belgium, where it severed a vital highway leading to St. Vith, and in January participated in the reduction of the German salient west of Houffalize. After a brief rest, the Division returned to the front, crossed the Roer River- into Duren, broke out of the Duren bridgehead, and drove on to capture Koln, 6 March 45. The Division swept on to Paderborn ; it was at a road junction near Paderborn that Major General Rose was killed while attempting to surrender to a German tank commander, 31 March 1945. The Division took Paderborn, assisted in mopping up the Ruhr pocket, crossed the Saale River, and after overcoming stiff resistance took Dessau, 21-23 April 1945.

 

INACTIVATED

10 November 1945 in Europe (Germany).

 
 

 

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