WW II-45th Infantry in Italy TB02
Friday, February 28, 2014
Texas, United States
In the hands of e-katerina.
This is not collectible.
Use TB627J3 to reference this item.
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Please drop this item in rural OR Premium Member Only caches. Do not place it in an urban cache or abandon it at a caching event. Transport the bug in the original plastic bag for as long as the bag lasts; the bag keeps the trackable clean and prevents tangling with other items. Otherwise, take the travel bug anywhere you wish. No permission is needed to leave the U.S.
Travel bug photos in the logs are appreciated. I will re-post them here, where they can be seen by other cachers.
About This Item
Replica Shoulder Patch. This travel bug is one of several made to recognize the US Army Divisions that fought in Sicily and mainland Italy in World War II. In the Spring of 2014 the travel bug owner activated, dipped, then, in March and April, took the travel bugs to caches in Italy. Some of the bugs were released in Italy and some were brought back to the states to be put into circulation.
The 45th Infantry Division of the United States Army was a major formation of the Oklahoma Army National Guard from 1920 to 1968. Headquartered mostly in Oklahoma City, the guardsmen fought in both World War II and the Korean War. The division's original shoulder sleeve insignia, approved in August 1924, featured a swastika, a common Native American symbol, as a tribute to the Southwestern United States region which had a large population of Native Americans. However, with the rise of the Nazi Party in Germany, with its infamous swastika symbol, the 45th Division stopped using the insignia. Following a long process of submissions for new designs, a new shoulder sleeve insignia, designed by a Carnegie, Oklahoma native named Woody Big Bow, featuring the Thunderbird, another Native American symbol, was approved in 1939.
The 45th Infantry Division guardsmen saw no major action until they became one of the first National Guard units activated in World War II in 1941. The division sailed for the Mediterranean region in June 1943, combat loaded. By the time the it landed in North Africa, the Allies had secured the African theater. The division was subsequently assigned a lead role in the amphibious assault on Sicily, coming ashore on 10 July near Scoglitti. The division advanced north to capture the airfields at Biscari and Comiso. The 45th advanced against Italian and German forces that resisted fiercely at Motta Hill. After this, the division drove to Messina.
On 10 September 1943, the division conducted its second landing at Agropoli and Paestum. After a week of heavy fighting, the 45th pushed to the Calore River. On 3 November it crossed the Volturno River and took Venafro. The division had great difficulty moving across the rivers and through the mountainous terrain, and the advance was slow to Monte Cassino. While allied forces conducted a frontal assault on Monte Cassino, some of the 45th was part of a detached grop to land behind enemy lines at Anzio. When the group moved from the beach head, it encountered heavy resistance from German armored units. The fight became a war of attrition. The remainder of the 45th Infantry Division and other units were also stuck in place until German fortifications were subjected to heavy bombardment from aircraft and artillery fire. On 23 May the division went on the offensive, crossing the Tiber River, outflanking, then taking Rome. The 45th Infantry was the first military unit to enter the Vatican.
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