Twelve WWII veterans of the 95th Infantry Division returned to Fort Indiantown Gap last month to rededicate their division monument.
These men, and many others who have already left us, arrived at Fort Indiantown Gap in early 1944 and would go on to “earn us the name of the Iron Men of Metz” as Brig. General Andrew Bassford describes in this video posted to Facebook:
According to military history, the influx of new men was heavy at Indiantown Gap, with the existing division troops having been sent via train from California to join the more recent enlistees. On the upside was Indiantown Gap’s relative accessibility to New York, Philly, Washington, and Baltimore. By June 25 an advance party had left for Europe and by July 27 all units would be at Camp Miles Standish in Massachusetts for staging to the Boston waterfront, where they would depart on the USS Mariposa on August 6 and on the USS West Point on August 9.
The battle of Metz was a key achievement for the 95th, which won the battle by working their way down the ring roads surrounding the city (obliviating many forts built along the route).
The significant and demanding battle at Metz was followed by travels with General Patton’s Third Army across Europe. Metz is a fortified city that had been doubly reinforced by the occupying Germans.
Speakers included: current 95th Training Division Commander, Brig. Gen. Andrew Bassford, former 95th Infantry Division (IT) Commander and president of the 95th Infantry Division Association retired Maj. Gen. Jim Archer and retired Maj. Gen. Wesley Craig, former adjutant general of Pennsylvania and former 28th Infantry Division Commander.
When the chips are down the United States always looks to the Army. We owe much to the Veterans of World War II your impact has been enormous.Maj. Gen. Wesley Craig at the ceremony
Today the 95th Infantry Division is called the 95th Training Division, based at Fort Sill in Oklahoma.