1st Infantry Division

The 1st Infantry Division saw its first combat in World War II in North Africa, landing at Oran and taking part in the initial fighting, 8-10 November 1942. Elements then took part in seesaw combat at Maktar, Medjez el Bab, Kasserine Pass, Gafsa, El Guettar, Beja, and Mateur, 21 January-9 May 1943, helping secure Tunisia.

The First was the first ashore in the invasion of Sicily, 10 July 1943 ; it fought a series of short, fierce battles on the island's tortuous terrain. When that campaign was over, the Division returned to England to prepare for the Normandy invasion.

The First Division assaulted Omaha Beach on D-day, 6 June 1944, some units suffering 30 percent casualties in the first hour, and secured Formigny and Caumont in the beachhead. The Division followed up the St. Lo break-through with an attack on Marigny, 27 July 1944, and then drove across France in a continuous offensive, reaching the German border at Aachen in September. The Division laid siege to Aachen, taking the city after a direct assault, 21 October 1944. The First then attacked east of Aachen through Hurtgen Forest, driving to the Roer, and moved to a rest area 7 December for its first real rest in 6 months' combat, when the von Rundstedt offensive suddenly broke loose, 16 December.

The Division raced to the Ardennes, and fighting continuously from 17 December 1944 to 28 January 1945, helped blunt and turn back the German offensive. Thereupon, the Division attacked and again breached the Siegfried Line, fought across the Roer, 23 February 1945, and drove on to the Rhine, crossing at the Remagen bridgehead, 15-16 March 1945. The Division broke out of the bridgehead, took part in the encirclement of the Ruhr Pocket, captured Paderborn, pushed through the Harz Mountains, and was in Czechoslovakia, at Kinsperk, Sangerberg, and Mnichov, when the war in Europe ended.

Unit awards
Medal Of Honor
Medal Of Honor
Awarded: 16
Distinguished Service Cross
Distinguished Service Cross
Awarded: 130
Distinguished Service Medal
Distinguished Service Medal
Awarded: 5
Silver Star
Silver Star
Awarded: 6.019
Legion of Merit
Legion of Merit
Awarded: 31
Soldier's Medal
Soldier's Medal
Awarded: 162
Bronze Star
Bronze Star
Awarded: 15.021
Air Medal
Air Medal
Awarded: 76
Combat chronicle
  • 1 November 1943: First Army.
  • 6 November 1943: VII Corps.
  • 2 February 1944: V Corps.
  • 14 July 1944: First Army.
  • 15 July 1944: VII Corps.
  • 1 August 1944: VII Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group.
  • 16 December 1944: V Corps.
  • 20 December 1944: Attached, with the entire First Army, to the British 21st Army Group.
  • 26 January 1945: XVIII (Abn) Corps, First Army, 12th Army Group.
  • 12 February 1945: III Corps.
  • 8 March 1945: VII Corps.
  • 27 April 1945: VIII Corps.
  • 30 April 1945: V Corps.
  • 6 May 1945: Third Army, 12th Army Group.

The (Big) Red One

1st Infantry Division
Original WW2 patch
Red Arabic numeral "I" on solid olive drab background.

Nicknamed: The (Big) Red One

Slogan: Duty first

Activated: 8 June 1917
Inactivated: Still active

Days of combat: 443

Date overseas: 7 August 1942

Casualties of the 1st Infantry Division
Killed in action: 1.973
Wounded in action: 15.003
Missing in action: 951
Captured: 631
Non battle: 14.002
Total casualties: 29.005

20
Unit Citations: 20
1st Infantry Division
Commanders of the 1st Infantry Division during WW2
Maj. Gen. Donald Cubbison

Maj. Gen. Donald Cubbison

February 1941
Maj. Gen. Terry de la Mesa Allen

Maj. Gen. Terry de la Mesa Allen

2 August 1942
Maj. Gen. Clarence R. Huebner

Maj. Gen. Clarence R. Huebner

July 1943
Maj. Gen. Clift Andrus

Maj. Gen. Clift Andrus

December 1944
Maj. Gen. Frank Milburn

Maj. Gen. Frank Milburn

August 1946

Campaigns

Algeria-French Morocco

Tunisia

Sicily

Normandy

Northern France

Rhineland

Ardennes-Alsace

Central Europe

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