No Victory in Valhalla

No Victory in Valhalla

The untold story of Third Battalion 506 Parachute Infantry Regiment from Bastogne to Berchtesgaden

General Military
  • Author: Ian Gardner
  • Short code: GNM
  • Publication Date: 20 Oct 2014
  • Number of Pages: 384
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About this Product

In late November 1944, after 71 days on the line in Holland, the 506th PIR was withdrawn having suffered heavy losses during Operation Market Garden, and each paratrooper was looking forward to three months rest, recuperation, and restructuring. However, this was not to be. On December 16, 1944, the Germans launched a huge offensive. The Battle of the Bulge had begun and the 101st Airborne were deployed to halt the German onslaught in the most incredible chapter of their wartime experiences. Bitter fighting in dreadful conditions saw the Third Battalion 506th PIR reduced to the size of a company before its eventual relief on January 17. The division as a whole was awarded a Unit Citation for its heroic defense of Bastogne - a first in the history of the US armed forces. With little time to recuperate, the battalion then fought on across Europe, taking part in the reduction of the Colmar Pocket, the Ruhr Pocket, and assisted in the liberation of several concentration camps in Germany. The Third Battalion finished the war occupying Hitler's mountain retreat of Berchtesgaden, held on readiness for deployment to the Pacific until Hiroshima and Nagasaki precipitated the Japanese surrender. Based on extensive interviews and first-hand accounts, and with the support of Ed Shames and other veterans, No Victory in Valhalla is the final dramatic part of the combat story of the Third Battalion 506th PIR. Using the words of "Screaming Eagles” themselves, it gives the reader a frank portrayal of the realities of the toughest fighting of World War II.

Biographical Note

Ian Gardner served for five years in Support Company, 10th Battalion, the Parachute Regiment as a medic before leaving the Territorial Army in 1993 due to injury. Always enthusiastic about military history, several years after leaving 10 Para Ian became interested in World War II US Paratroopers. After a visit to Normandy in 2000 he decided to focus on the 101st Airborne Division, and in particular the 3rd Battalion of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, which led to the critically acclaimed Tonight We Die As Men, co-written with Roger Day. This, his second historical work, continues their story.Col. Ed Shames is a ‘Band of Brothers' veteran. He received a battlefield commission into E ('Easy') Company of the 506th PIR on 13 June 1944 in Carentan, France. He survived the war before eventually retiring as a Colonel. He is an active member of veterans' societies.

Contents

Foreword by Ed Shames
Preface by George Koskimaki
Acknowledgements
Introduction by James "Pee Wee” Martin
1. "Johnny, we hardly knew you”
Camp Châlons, Mournmelon-le-Grand - November 28-December 18, 1944
2. "Ghost front”
December 17-19, 1944
3 "Today is the only reality”
December 20, 1944
4. "Epitaph for a generation”
December 21-24, 1944
5. "The deep six”
The worst winter in 50 years
6. "Steel whirlwind”
Post-Christmas breakthrough
7. "Hell night”
Clearing the Falzone Woods - January 9, 1945
8. "Salute the new dawn”
The final attacks on Foy and Noville - January 13-17, 1945
9. "After the storm”
Alsace Lorraine and the Colmar Pocket - January 21-February 25, 1945
10. "Home alive in 45”
Return to Mournmelon - February 26-April 2, 1945
11. "Setting sons”
The Ruhr, western Germany - April 3-24, 1945
12. "Striking back”
The plight of the 3rd Battalion POWs - June 1944-May 1945
13. "Candle for the dead
Southern Bavaria - April 28-May 3, 1945
14. "The roaring silence”
Berchtesgaden, Austria, and France - May 4-November 30, 1945
Epilogue
Bibliography
Glossary
Index

Chapter 2 "Into the Abyss - Bastogne"
December 17 - 19, 1944

Chapter 3 "Today is the only Reality"
December 20, 1944

Chapter 4 "Thin Blue Line"
December 21 - 24, 1944

Chapter 5 "The Deep Six"
The Worst Winter in Fifty Years - Christmas to New Year

Chapter 6 "Hell Night"
The Fazone Woods - January 9, 1945

Chapter 7 "Stars and Stripes"
The Battered Bastards of Bastogne

Chapter 8 "Home Alive in 45"
Alsace Lorraine, Jan 21 - February 25, 1945

Chapter 9 "Redemption Day"
The Plight of the POW's

Chapter 10 "A Walk in the Sun"
Return to Mourmelon, February 26 - April 1, 1945

Chapter 11 "The Last Stand"
The Battle of the Ruhr Pocket, Germany - April 1945

Chapter 12 "War The Ultimate Experience"
Berchtesgaden & Austria - Summer 1945

Chapter 13 "The Last Jump"
Joigny, France - August 1945

Chapter 14 "Welcome Home"
September
October 1945


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