20 20th Armored Division

Nickname: None recorded. ….. Shoulder Patch: Regular armored patch, an equilateral triangle divided into three equal areas, the right being red to represent field artillery: the top, yellow for cavalry, and the right, blue, for infantry. Superimposed are a black tank tread and cannon crossed by a red bold of lightning. ….. History: The 20th Armored Division is a product of this war. Tanks were used in World War I, but the tank divisions of the American Army got their introduction to combat as units in World War II. ….. Training: The division was activated March 13, 1943, at Camp Campbell, Ky., and remained there for the entire period of its training. It was successively under the IV Armored Corps, the Armored Command, the XX Corps, the XXII Corps and the Second Army. Highlight of its training period came in December, 1944, when it simulated an attack on an island. It captured the mythical “Isle of Campbell,” part of the training center’s 105,000-acre range. The water was simulated, but there was nothing unreal about the combat problem which lasted three days. Competent military observers called it “one of the best military maneuvers staged in the Middle West.” Overseas: January, 1945 (ETO) ….. Commanding Generals: Maj. Gen. Stephen G Henry, February – October, 1943; Maj. Gen. Roderick B. Allen, October, 1943 to September, 1944; Maj. Gen. Orlando Ward, September, 1944, to July, 1945: Maj Gen. John W. Leonard, August, 1945, to present. ….. Component Units: (As of January, 1945): 412th, 413th and 414th Armored Field Artillery Battalions; 9th, 20th and 27th Tank Battions: 8th, 65th and 70th Armored Infantry Battalions. Higher command (combat): Seventh Army. ….. Combat Highlights: Late to arrive overseas, the 20th Armored Division was first announced as part of the Seventh Army in April, 1945, during the drive on Munich, last stages of the campaign in Europe. By May 4, practically on the eve of victory, the division had reached an area north of Lake Chiem. It was in Traunstein, Germany, in June. Although its combat career was brief, the division was able to mark up a few interesting and even spectacular experiences. In a sweep south or Munich, it freed 50 Canadian prisoners held by the Germans and cut off the escape route of the Nazis still fighting in that third-largest city of Germany. A short time before, the 20th had bagged a banner crop of prisoners out of the fading Reich army during a smash into Salzburg on the heels of the 3d Infantry Division’s lead elements. The 20th numbered among its prisoners three German lieutenant generals and one major general.