27th Infantry Division

Nickname: New York Division. . Shoulder Patch: The patch is khaki-bordered and circular in shape. Against a black background and within a red circle are the letters “NY” worked into a monogram. Within the red circle are stars representing the constellation, Orion, in honor of World War Commander Maj. Gen. John P. O’Ryan. . Song: “Hymn of the 27th Division.” (Words available in OTI file). . Source: New York National Guard . History: First employment of NYNG troops as a complete tactical division was on the Mexican border where the division was called the 6th. Redesignated the 27th by War Department in July, 1917, inducted Aug. 5, 1917, the division trained at Camp Wadsworth, Spartansburg, S. C. Overseas: Early summer, 1918. Actions (by elements or division): Meuse-Argonne, Dickebush Lake and Scherpenberg (later merged into Ypres-Lys offensive), Somme offensive, and smashing of Hindenberg line. . Training: Inducted Oct. 15, 1940, Ft. McClellan, Ala. Maneuvers: Tenn., La. and Ark. (1941). Overseas Apr., 1942 (Hawaii). . Commanding Generals: Maj. Gen. Ralph McT. Pennell, Oct., 1940, to Nov., 1942; Maj. Gen. Ralph C. Smith, Nov., 1942, to June, 1944; Maj. Gen. George W. Griner, Jr., June, 1944, to present. . Component Units: (As of Apr., 1942) 105th, 106th 165th (the “Fighting 69th” of World War) Infantry Regiments.; 104th, 105th, 249th (L) and 106th (M) FA Battalions. Higher Command: Tenth Army. . Combat Highlights: New York Division elements were Island hoppers. They annihilated the Japs on Makin Nov., 1943, in three days of bloody fighting, wiping out all Japs. They went on to Enewetok in Feb., 1944, to capture that tiny island and destroy all Japs there. With the Marshall Islands campaign successfully concluded, the New Yorkers after a period of intensive preparation jumped off for Saipan. The division was teamed up with the Marines for a night amphibious landing on bloody Saipan (Marianas), June 16, 1944. By June 18, a bridgehead was established and 27th troops reached within 200 yards of Aslito airstrip in the area where the first B-29s later took off to assault Japan. Garapan and Tanapag fell in an advance which was gaining momentum. On July 7, the division suffered severe losses when its left flank was overrun by a powerful Jap Banzai charge. Saipan campaigning then became a series of mopping-up operations. With the Marianas secure, the 27th went on to Okinawa, April 15, 1945, for the next battle action. During the intensive fighting there, elements of the 27th made a side trip to Kume Island, 50 miles to the west and captured it.

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