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Diary Book 1: Sept 1944 - June 1945
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Guard duty - Just us - movies - Kenny P. Marched to La Haye du Puits to board train for Belgium - box car ride. crowded - cursing at one another c rations heated in chem. tablets - 10-1 saw cathedral of Notre Dame in distance as well as Eiffel Tower - train moved slow - threw cigarettes to workers - great sport - scrambled for them like pigeons for crumbs arr. in Belgium - rainy night - Mechelen - trucks took us to area - put up tent in darkenss Brussels on "pass" - dance last evening before leaving after guard duty - much fun - crowded - reseted in ?? ?? & ?? ?? English trucks took us to front line - relieved British soldiers in their fox holes. Artillery fired heavily that night. Next day we prepared to move into "battle" waited along dirt road officers moved up - artillery - finally we moved across road - first impression dead horses - trees uprooted - several dead Germans lying in ditches firing up ahead Bob & I moved out ahead in field - three farm yard - crumbled buildings. jumped into Jerry fox holes 20 yds ahead of squad which was digging in along ditches. under artillery for at least 1 hr. didn't know whether to stay in fox holes or not
Page 03 Notes from Bob Hall: "When your Dad & I jumped into Jerry fox holes, we got mortar fire & dirt was being thrown in by explosions. I said maybe we should run. Your Dad said "Hell no!" Probably saved our lives right there. We were told never to jump into Jerry holes as they were known to booby trap them & also they had them zeroed in so they could blast us out. Someone was watching out for us right there."