On Saturday, March 11, the World War 2 Guys kicked off their 2023 season at the 144th Annual Omaha St. Patrick's Day Parade organized by the Ancient Order of Hibernians. Our line-up for the day included Jerrimy, Will, Eric, Matt, Cody, and Jacob who was joining us for the first time. The story of the day was the weather which was typically nasty for March in Nebraska. Temps were hovering in the low 30s with continuous rain for the whole parade. Thanks to Uncle Sam, our M1943 uniforms incorporating the layering principle kept us pretty warm, however our toes and fingers still got a little numb. Our uniform for the day was focused on the 17th Airborne Division at Operation Varsity in late March 1945. Two of the notable features of this uniform are the American Flag worn on the right sleeve and the Parachute First Aid Packet tied to the front of the helmet net. The parade itself was quick and enjoyable with hundreds of enthusiastic spectators braving the cold, wet morning to support a favorite Omaha tradition. Afterwards our group tried to get into the Dubliner for a pint, but they were overcrowded so we had to find another venue. So the boys from H Company headed west and snuggled into a nice Party Room table at The Brazenhead. With Guinness all around, some Reubens, and some cold Bangers and Mash our squad spent an enjoyable lunch hour together talkin' Army stuff and events to come.
On Saturday, April 9, the boys of H Company gathered for our annual Spring Training event at Fort Atkinson. In attendance were Eric, Will, Matt, Mike, Joe, and Jerrimy. The day started off with rifle drill and some basic marching on the parade ground. Jerrimy did an excellent job guiding us through this phase of our training! Next up was some familiarization time with the 17th Airborne uniform, equipment, and weapons used in Operation Varsity. That was followed by everyone's favorite time of day - chow time! Jerrimy showed off his new 5 in 1 Rations project that he's diligently been working on. Everyone was impressed with the quality and attention to detail that he's been putting into his WWII rations research. We did some refresher course work on our hand signals and field formations work from last month followed by a little field march. We got some great photos of a few troopers doing a mock house clearing which was fun. The day ended with some good old fashioned baseball time with a few of the guys getting some nice hits. Hazard's head almost got taken off by a line drive but he survived! It was a great day and another top notch event for the World War 2 Guys!
On Saturday, February 26, the boys of H Company, 507th PIR kicked off our exciting 2022 season with a winter training event at the Loess Hills State Forest. This was the first of two training events leading up to our Operation Varsity event in May. In attendance were Privates Mason, Quinn, Patzke and Yurgil along with Pfc. Williams, Sgt. Hazard and SSgt. Krelle. The morning started with a vigorous field march up and down the picturesque hills of our training site. Sgt. Hazard led the way in an action that sets our unit apart from many others in the field. We then began some classroom training led by SSgt. Krelle who covered squad hand signals, squad structure, and movement in the field. The whole squad enjoyed a test run of new C-Rations created by Pvt. Patzke which tasted excellent and looked extremely authentic as well. Our unit now has a reliable source of period correct rations for future events. We then spent time as a squad moving in the field using various formations such as open and closed squad columns, skirmish lines, a wedge formation, and the diamond formation. As a final exercise, we assaulted a group of unsuspecting German armored vehicles using a base of fire and maneuver team with much success. We ended our day discussing our 2022 events schedule and plans for the year ahead. It was a great first event and a pleasure to see our group together in action once again!
On Saturday, November 13, the World War 2 Guys were back in action for an event we called the "Push to Luxembourg." Our scenario for the day was set in January 1945 when the 17th Airborne Division was pushing from Belgium into Luxembourg. Joining up for the day were Matt, Will, Mike, Eric and Joe, doing his first ever World War II field event. We used our Loess Hill site for this event and had to deal with a pretty cold and windy day, but with some nice sun early on. We made our way through open fields and up to our hilltop trench where we removed quite a bit of brush and re-fortified our line. We spent quite a bit of time just cleaning up the trench line and extending it a little more to the east. There was hot coffee and some hot chow thanks to Will and Joe and their small fires. Later in the day, Matt, Eric and Joe patrolled another hilltop and some wooded areas which we plan on using in 2022 for another immersion event. With rain starting to spit down on us, we called it a day and made our way back to the vehicles. But it was a great little outing and some fun time with friends in the field!
Read all about the great events that the World War 2 Guys take part in throughout the year.