On our trip to France we visited Normandy and the sites from Operation Overlord. Steve’s dad, Sam Rosenbaum was a medic in Company B, 104th Medical Battalion, 29th Infantry Division that landed at Omaha beach D-Day. Sam didn’t like to talk about it.
104th Medical Battalion, 29th Infantry Division, Omaha Beach
104th Medical Battalion moto
“PRO DEO, PATRIA, ET VICINE”
(For God, My Country, and My Neighbor)
104th Medical Battalion
Commanding Officer: Lt Col. Arthur N. Ericksen
Executive Officer: Major George B. Faries
Company A: Capt. Raymond F. Conway
Company B: Capt. Lester N. Kolman
Company C: Capt. John S. Williams
Clearing Company: Major Francis M. Mangold
The 104th Medical Battalion served throughout World War II rendering medical service to the division troops, participating in campaigns in the European Theater of Operations. Under the provisions of General Orders #303, War Department, 1945, as amended, the Battalion is entitled to bear on its colors, streamers with inscription as follows:
World War II
The Battalion was also awarded the French Croix de Guerre for its part in the landings at Omaha Beach 6 June 1944
The following is an excerpt from the U.S. Army Medical Department, Office of Medical History website. For the complete text, click this link http://history.amedd.army.mil
The after action report is also very interesting.
The information on the Office of Medical History website is considered public information and may be distributed or copied.
III. INITIAL LANDING
4. OMAHA BEACH, (6-11 June, inclusive).
1. D Day (6 June): The landing of medical units on Omaha (V Corps) Beach was delayed due to the severe opposition encountered on the beach. Upon landing it was impossible to set up the usual type medical installation. At 1350B, Headquarters & Headquarters Detachment, 61st Medical Battalion, 5th Engineer Special Brigade, closely followed by the 391st and 393rd Collecto-Clearing Companies of this battalion, landed on Easy Red Beach. Since it was impossible to proceed inland to designated locations, collecting points were set up on the beach and the task of collecting casualties and administering first aid to the wounded begun. Six (6) surgical teams of the 3rd Auxiliary Surgical Group, attached to the Collecto-Clearing Companies of the 61st Medical Battalion were able only to render first aid because their equipment had not as yet landed. By evening of D Day, these units had established two stations ; one in a tank ditch near Easy Green Beach and the other in a pillbox inland from Easy Red Beach.
At 1600B the first elements of the 60th Medical Battalion, 6th Engineer Special Brigade, landed on Easy Green Beach. An attempt was made to clear this beach, but direct artillery and small arms fire necessitated moving to a defiladed position somewhat above high water mark where a collecting station was established inland from Easy Red Beach. The personnel and equipment of the 60th and 61st Medical Battalions continued to arrive ashore during the evening and night of D Day. The collecting companies of the 1st Medical Battalion, 1st Infantry Division, landed with their respective combat teams, this date. A part of the Clearing Company, 1st Medical Battalion, landed this day, but was pinned to the beach. Collecting Company “ B”, 104th Medical Battalion, 29th Infantry Division, landed with its combat team as scheduled and proceeded inland. Throughout the day and night, casualties were evacuated from the Omaha Beach to LSTs. There is no definite figure on evacuation for this day, but it is estimated by the 60th and 61st Medical Battalions that a total of approximately 830 casualties were evacuated.
Dr. Lester Norman Kolman (June 6, 1912 – August 29, 1987) was Sam’s commanding officer in the 104th and occasionally his personal physician in Baltimore years later.
An account of landing on D-Day on an LCI (Landing Craft Infantry): 104th Medical Battalion, 29th Division Aboard LCI(L)-94 on D-Day by Mark Johnson, COL, USA (Ret.)
Narratives, articles, personal stories and photo galleries of D-Day June 6th 1944 and After – The U.S. Coast Guard at Normandy