Come Out Fighting: The first African-American tankers in combat

The explosion was massive, far larger than the men of the 761st Tank Battalion were expecting when they… [more]

Come Out Fighting: The first African-American tankers in combat Come Out Fighting: The first African-American tankers in combat

First African American tomb guard recalls ‘walking the mat’

Arlington National Cemetery rests on an expanse of rolling hills in northern Virginia. One of the busiest… [more]

First African American tomb guard recalls ‘walking the mat’ First African American tomb guard recalls 'walking the mat'

WWII veteran returns to Dutch cave to honor those who ‘left their mark’

In September 1944, Maastricht was the first Dutch city to be liberated by the Allies during World War… [more]

WWII veteran returns to Dutch cave to honor those who ‘left their mark’ WWII veteran returns to Dutch cave to honor those who 'left their mark'

The healing power of dogs

Soldiers with PTSD train service dogs for wounded veterans   Sometimes the best therapy… [more]

The healing power of dogs The healing power of dogs

Horse healing

Veterans take to the farm to overcome invisible war wounds On an expansive, scenic farm in Solvang,… [more]

Horse healing Horse healing

Latest Features

A German tank crew guards a column of American prisoners of war during World War II. Like the members of the Intelligence and Reconnaissance Platoon, 394th Regiment, 99th Infantry Division, these men were doomed to a hellish existence until Allied troops began liberating POW camps in the spring of 1945. The men of the I&R Platoon had been captured on the first day of the Battle of the Bulge, Dec. 16, 1944. Their 12-hour stand against a German battalion in Lanzerath, Belgium, helped delay the initial German force long enough for the Allies to move troops and reinforce critical positions, thereby helping win the battle. The men were finally recognized for their bravery in 1981 with a Presidential Unit Citation, four Distinguished Service Crosses, five Silver Stars and 9 Bronze Stars with V device, making the platoon the most decorated of World War II. (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Army Center for Military History)
26 January 2015

One more battle

After a 12-hour stand on the first day of the Battle of the Bulge, the men of the 394th Regiment's Intelligence and Reconnaissance Platoon faced a new fight for survival in Nazi POW camps.

Private First Class Tammy Scriven, an information technology specialist assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 35th Signal Brigade, provides desktop computer support, Dec. 13, 2014, at the Barclay Training Center in Monrovia, Liberia. Scriven says her family does special things to let her know they are thinking of her during the holidays. (U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Rashene Mincy, 55th Signal Company-Combat Camera)
22 December 2014

Deployed during the holidays: staying connected

Deployments are hard on Soldiers and their families, but they can be especially difficult during the holidays. Soldiers and their families share ways to stay connected and reduce stress.

Deep in the Ardennes Forest, on a hill above the village of Lanzerath, Belgium, members of the Intelligence and Reconnaissance Platoon, 394th Regiment, 99th Infantry Division would have camouflaged their foxholes like this unidentified unit. The foxholes, fortified with three to five thick logs each, helped the Soldiers not only withstand three German assaults the first day of the Battle of the Bulge, Dec. 16, 1944, but inflict withering casualties before they finally ran out of ammunition and were captured. They delayed the initial German force for half a day, long enough for the Allies to move troops and reinforce critical positions, thereby helping win the battle. The men were finally recognized for their bravery in 1981 with a Presidential Unit Citation, four Distinguished Service Crosses, five Silver Stars and 9 Bronze Stars with V device, making the platoon the most decorated of World War II. (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Army Center for Military History)
16 December 2014

The Battle of Lanzerath

Outnumbered 20 to one, this is the story of how a single U.S. Army intelligence and reconnaissance platoon held up the German advance, changing the outcome of the Battle of the Bulge.

Recon Warrior Challenge program participants explore a helicopter while touring Fort Benning, Georgia, July 1, 2014. (Photo courtesy of Staff Sgt. Rob McEver)
10 November 2014

Up to the challenge

This Fort Benning NCO is using what he’s learned in the Army to instill in local youth confidence, discipline and respect.

Chef Robert Irvine and actor Gary Sinise welcome Staff Sgt. Tony Wood and his wife Joedi to their newly renovated home on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. Irvine, Sinise, Wood’s buddy Bryan Anderson (in the wheelchair) and hundreds of volunteers surprised the couple by fixing and decorating their home, which had started falling apart almost as soon as they bought it to accommodate their biological children, adopted children and foster children. Wood, who was wounded in Iraq, has overcome massive internal injuries, traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder to stay in the Army. The special will air across six channels the evening of Veterans Day. (Photo by Jeremiah Alley, courtesy of the Food Network)
10 November 2014

A Hero’s Welcome

Hundreds of friends, neighbors and fellow Soldiers team up with celebrities and open their hearts to help a Soldier and his wife continue to open their home to foster kids.

Never forgotten
6 October 2014

Faith, friends and paying it forward

When her husband was killed in Afghanistan in 2011, a widow and her three children left the Fort Drum, New York, area they knew and loved. Today, they are back, and serving as a link between Soldiers and the community.

Capt. Justin Fitch
25 August 2014

A sense of mission, to the end

If doctors said you had a finite amount of time left, how would you spend your remaining days? It’s a question U.S. Army Capt. Justin Fitch has already answered.

Blog

5 December 2014

How to train a service dog

Retired U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Spencer Milo, who participated in the service dog-training program at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, talks about what goes into getting a dog ready to partner with a wounded veteran.

26 September 2014

Please, ask me about my son

Gold Star Mother and retired Chief Warrant Officer 5 Candy Martin doesn't mind when you ask about her Soldier son, who was killed by insurgents in Iraq in 2007. But don't ever ask her if she's "gotten over it."

All Posts

Photos

Soldiers from Dog Company of the 761st Tank Battalion check equipment before leaving England for combat in France in the fall of 1944. The 761st Tank Battalion was the first African-American tank battalion to go into battle. While most of the companies used M4 Sherman tanks, Dog Company used lighter M3 Stuart tanks and served as the reconnaissance arm of the battalion. When the unit’s supply trucks became useless due to the icy, snowy weather that winter, Dog Company also began to transport supplies and wounded Soldiers. (Photo courtesy of the Gen. George Patton Museum and Center of Leadership)
A tank from Able Company, 761st Tank Battalion, crosses the Seille River in France, Nov. 9, 1944, the unit’s second of 183 days in combat. That November was particularly bloody, with 22 Soldiers killed in action. Ultimately, the battalion – the first African-American tank unit to go into battle – earned four campaign medals, 11 Silver Stars, 69 Bronze Stars and about 300 Purple Hearts. A Medal of Honor and a Presidential Unit Citation came later. (Photo courtesy of the Gen. George Patton Museum and Center of Leadership)
Gunner Cpl. Carlton Chapman poses in his M4 Sherman tank near Nancy, France, Nov. 5, 1944. Chapman served in the 761st Tank Battalion, the first African-American tank unit to go into combat. It was also one of the Army’s most highly trained tank battalions, thanks to two years spent training at Camp Claiborne, Louisiana, and Camp Hood, Texas. The unit’s first engagement came Nov. 8, only days after this photo was taken. (Photo courtesy of the National Archives)
Tankers from the 761st Tank Battalion and infantrymen from the 3rd Battalion, 409th Regiment, 103rd Division, 7th U.S. Army, make pancakes together near Reisdorf, Germany, April 3, 1945. The two units led the Army’s advance into the Rhineland region of Germany in March 1945. The 761st Tank Battalion was the first African-American tank battalion to go into battle, and spent 183 continuous days in combat. (Photo courtesy of the National Archives)
The men of the 761st Tank Battalion – the first African-American tank unit to go into combat – chose their own logo and motto shortly after the unit was activated in 1942: a black panther and “Come Out Fighting.” They lived up to the motto, enduring 183 continuous days in combat, and earning four campaign medals, 11 Silver Stars, 69 Bronze Stars and about 300 Purple Hearts. A Medal of Honor and a Presidential Unit Citation came later. (Image courtesy of Army Heraldry)
Lt. Gen. George Patton awards the Silver Star to Pvt.  Ernest A. Jenkins of the 761st Tank Battalion. Patton welcomed the African-American unit to France – the first of its kind to go into combat – in the fall of 1944, telling them, “I would never have asked for you if you weren’t good. I don’t care what color you are so long as you go up there and kill those Kraut sons of bitches.” He was expecting great things from them, he added, and the tankers lived up to his faith, earning a total of four campaign medals, 11 Silver Stars, 69 Bronze Stars and about 300 Purple Hearts. (A Medal of Honor and a Presidential Unit Citation came later.) They were even chosen to lead the push to the Rhine River in Germany. (Photo courtesy of the Gen. George Patton Museum and Center of Leadership)
Tank crews from the 761st Tank Battalion await orders to clean out scattered Nazi machine gun nests in Coburg, Germany, April 25, 1945. The 761st Tank Battalion was the first African-American tank battalion to go into battle, and spent 183 continuous days in combat. The unit earned four campaign medals, 11 Silver Stars, 69 Bronze Stars and about 300 Purple Hearts. A Medal of Honor and a Presidential Unit Citation came later. (Photo courtesy of the National Archives)
Tank Commander Harvey Woodard of the 761st Tank Battalion assesses terrain near Nancy, France, in November 1944. That November was particularly bloody for the 761st, with 22 Soldiers killed in action. Ultimately, the battalion – the first African-American tank unit to go into battle – earned four campaign medals, 11 Silver Stars, 69 Bronze Stars and about 300 Purple Hearts. A Medal of Honor and a Presidential Unit Citation came later. (Photo courtesy of the Gen. George Patton Museum and Center of Leadership)
Left to right: Capt. Ivan Harrison, Headquarters Company commanding officer; Capt. Irvin McHenry, Charlie Company commanding officer; and 2nd Lt. James Lightfoot, the 81mm mortar platoon leader, pose in front of one of the 761st Tank Battalion’s M4 Sherman tanks. The 761st Tank Battalion was the first African-American tank unit to go into combat, and while it had a handful of white officers, most of the company commanders and platoon leaders were African-American. Harrison even became the battalion commander after Germany fell. According to Gina M. DiNicolo, author of “The Black Panthers: A Story of Race, War, and Courage,” the Army did not segregate officer candidate schools. There simply weren’t enough resources. (Photo courtesy of the Gen. George Patton Museum and Center of Leadership)
A tank from Able Company, 761st Tank Battalion, crosses the Seille River in France, Nov. 9, 1944, the unit’s second of 183 days in combat. That November was particularly bloody, with 22 Soldiers killed in action. Ultimately, the battalion – the first African-American tank unit to go into battle – earned four campaign medals, 11 Silver Stars, 69 Bronze Stars and about 300 Purple Hearts. A Medal of Honor and a Presidential Unit Citation came later. (Photo courtesy of the Gen. George Patton Museum and Center of Leadership)
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