Hello again, Chris Rosenberg !
I was pleased to have received your prompt response.
E. DePilla's tour of duty in combat (49 days) was relatively brief, especially when compared to other infantry divisions such as the
2nd (303 days), 4th (299), and 1st (292). But 49 was TOO long by any measure.
A brief history of the division follows:
Activated 15 Jul 43, at Camp Carson, CO;
trained at CA and GA;
staged at Camp Kilmer, NJ, 14 Jan 45;
departed NYNY P/E, 26 Jan 45;
arrived Le Havre, France, 6 Feb 45;
entered Germany, 24 Mar 45;
entered Austria, 4 May 45;
returned to NY P/E, 10 Mar 46;
inactivated at Camp Kilmer, NJ, 11 Mar 46.
(NOTE: There is a slight difference in the date you say he got away from France and got home vs the version in my reference. He MAY have been sick or in detention, either of which would have resulted in a delay in his return)
The division included three Infantry Regiments (5th IR, 14th IR, 66th IR),four Field Artillery Battalions (564th FABN, 607th,608th, 609th), plus other elements.
Rhineland, 15 Sep 44 / 21 Mar 45
Central Europe, 22 Mar 45 / 11 May 45,
the official end of the war in Europe.
He would qualify for the ETO ribbon with two campaign stars.
Killed in Action,243
Wounded in Action, 843
Died from Wounds, 35.
Casualty rate, approximately 13%.
Arrived Le Havre, FR, 6 Feb 45;
relieved the 100th ID at Ratzwiller, 1 Mar 45;
pushed thru the West Wall, and captured Piermasens, 21 Mar 45;
crossed Rhine River at Oppenheim, 22 Mar 45;
went into resrve near Frankfort;
intercepted a German force north of Hanau, 2 Apr 45;
the 5th IR and 14th IR forced the Germans east into Budigen Forest;
the diivision eleminated this pocket, 4 Apr 45;
moved to the Fulda area, 5 Apr 45;
cleared to the Meiningen-Marisfeld-Juchsen line, 8 Apr 45;
drove to Coburg, 10 Apr 45;
cut the Munich-Berlin Highway, 13 Apr 45;
fought the Battle of Bayreuth, 14-16 Apr 45, in very heavy fighting.
The division moved south and relieved the 14th Armored Division,;
ended German resistance in Haag area, 20 Apr 45;
cut the Sulzbach-Nuremberg Highway/railroad, 21 Apr 45;
the 5th IR overran Sulzbach-Rosenberg, 22 Apr 45;
the 5th IR reached Regen, 24 Apr 45;
the 5th IR reached the Danube River at Frengkofen, 25 Apr 45.
Regensburg surrendered to division, 27 Apr 45.
The 5th IR and 66th IR captured the Inn River Dams, and entered Austria, 2 May 45;
5th IR advanced unopposed to Steyr on the Enns River, 5 May 45;
5th IR moved forward and secured Ennsthofen Dam, across the Enns,
6 May 45.
Finally,the division made initial contact with the Soviet forces east of Linz, Austria, 8 May 45,, as hostilities ceased.
The division was located at Wels, Austria, at war's end, 15 Aug 45.
If you have an adequate military topography map, you may trace the division's committments to various higher elements by the following:
Overseas Wartime Assignments:
15th Army, 21 Jan 45
7th Army, 2 Mar 45
XV Corps, 9 Mar 45
XXI Corps, 25 Mar 45
12th Army Group (Omar Bradley), 29 Mar 45
3rd Army (Geo. Patten), 8 Apr 45
XII Corps, 11 Apr 45
XX Corps, 20 Apr 45
BG R.L. Spragins, Jul-43
MG E.M. Landrum, Oct-44
MG W.G. Wymann, Nov-44
BG O.S. Rolfe, Aug-45
MG A.A. White, Oct-45.
That is about all I can come up with on short notice, Chris ! I hope that your sons will appreciate their grand dad just a little bit more after they have digested exactly what he went trough in those trying times.
Feel free to get back to me if you have other needs in this area.
I will dig out the information on acquiring lost or un-issued medals
With best regards,
Louie Franklin Turner.