WW II Sub­ma­rine Base

Serve Daily - - NEWS - By F. Keith Davis

After we went ashore on Utah Beach, in th area of St. Mere Eg­less, we fought our way up the coast to Brest, France. Brest had the largest Sub­ma­rine Base in the world at that time. This is where the Nazi Sub­ma­rine Wolf Packs would go into the At­lantic Ocean and sink mil­lions of tons of Al­lied Shipping, most head­ing for Eng­land or Europe. Thou­sands of sol­diers, Mer­chant Marines, Sailors and Civil­ians lost their lives with the sink­ing of so many ships.

Our ob­ser­va­tion bat­tal­ion dug in close e to the Sub­ma­rine Base. We were the eyes and ears of the Field Ar­tillery and di­rected Ar­tillery Fire on the base. The Base was sur­rounded by hun­dreds of Anti-Air­craft guns on three sides.

We watched a lot of Amer­i­can B-17 Bombers make bombing raids over this base. We could see black puffs of Anti-Amer­i­can gun shells burst­ing among the bombers. When a B-17 was hit and would lose a wing it would dive in a large cir­cle and then crash into the ground or ocean. If both wings were still in­tact and was dis­abled it would dive straight down. Ev­ery time a B-17 was de­stroyed, 10 young Amer­i­can men would lose their lives. Some­times we would see one or two white para­chutes plume out, but not of­ten.

We had two huge black French Moroc­cans adopt our out­fit at Brest. They wore Moroc­can style baggy trousers and the only weapons they had were huge Sabers. They would sleep un­der our trucks in the day­time and eat our food. At night, they would go be­hind en­emy lines and kill “Bosch”. Bosch was Amer­i­can slang for Ger­man Sol­diers. (The Moroc­can’s didn’t like the Nazi’s be­cause they treaeted them so badly in French Morocco.) They spent three days with us and we never saw them again.

Our Ar­tillery fired in this base from the ground, the Air Force bombed it from the air, and the Navy shelled it from the sea. After much fire power and many days, the Nazi High Com­mand ca­pit­u­lated and the Sub­ma­rine Base sur­ren­dered.

Our 16th Field Ob­ser­va­tion Bat­tal­ion went on to fight at St. Lo, Par­ris, Bat­tle of the Bulge, Koblenz, cross the Rhine River, lib­er­ate the Ohrdruf Con­cen­tra­tion Camp (First one lib­er­ated on the Western Front), the Su­daten Land, Nurem­burg and Cze­choslo­vakia when the War in Eur­poe ended May 8, 1945.

From the time we went ashore on Utah Beach un­til the war’s end I was on the front lines the whole time. I know that Free­dom is not Free.

(Serve Daily would like to thank all Men and Women who have served, are cur­rently serv­ing, or will serve to pro­tect the free­doms af­forded by God and The Con­sti­tu­tion of the United States.)

Sub­mit­ted by Keith Davis

F. Keith Davis near the Sub­ma­rine Base in Brest, France.

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