16th Armored Division

Nickname: None recorded. ….. Shoulder Patch: Regular armored triangular patch divided into three areas of red (representing Field Artillery), yellow (representing Cavalry) and blue (representing Infantry). Superimposed on these areas are a cannon and tracks of a tank in black across which is a bolt of lightning in red. ….. History: Although tanks were first introduced into World War I, the tank or armored division is a type of unit not introduced to warfare by the U. S. prior to this war. The Germans used Panzer units prior to entry of this country and had the advantage of a trial period in which to iron out difficulties in organization. ….. Training: The 16th Armored Division was activated in July, 1943, at Camp Chaffee, Arkansas, and remained there throughout its training in the Zone of the interior. It was assigned first to the Armored Command and then successively to the X, XVI and XXXVI Corps of the Second Army. On September, 1944, it was assigned to the Fourth Army. It went overseas in January, 1945, to the European Theater of Operations. ….. Commanding Generals: Maj. Gen. Douglass T. Greene, July, 1943, to August, 1944; Brig. Gen. John L. Pierce, November, 1944, to present. During September – October, 1944, the division had an acting commanding general. ….. Component Units: (As of January, 1945) 395th, 396th, and 397th Armored Field Artillery Battalions; 5th, 16th and 26th Tank Battalions; 18th, 64th and 69th Armored Infantry Battalions. Higher Command: Third Army. ….. Awards: Maj. Gen. Clarence R. Huebner, V Corps Commanding General, commended the 16th for its part in the final phases of the Corps operations in Europe. “The march of the 16th Armored Division from the Nurnberg area to joining the Corps, its deployment and its advance to capture Pilsen, in Czechoslovakia, were executed with precision and speed,” the commendation read. ….. Combat Highlights: The 16th Armored Division arrived in France 5 February, 1945, and was assigned to the Third Army. The organization arrived at Nurnberg, Germany, 28 April and there made its final preparations for entry into combat. On 4 May, the 16th sped to Weidhaus, 80 miles from Nurnberg, and two days later launched its assault on the city of Pilsen. The attack on Pilsen marked the farthest point of American penetration into Czechoslovakia. Pilsen was taken 6 May during the division’s single day of combat action. The 16th rounded up some 6000 prisoners along with civilians attempting to flee from Russian forces which by that time had reached Prague. The division was subsequently stationed at Pilsen.

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