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43rd Infantry Division
Winged Victory Division

Looking for more information from military/civilian personnel assigned to or associated with the U.S. Army in Germany from 1945 to 1989. If you have any stories or thoughts on the subject, please contact me.


Division History

Organization

Division Paper


Page 2
Inf Regts
Div Arty


Page 3
Div Trains

143rd Tank Bn

Air Section
Related Links

 
Division History
 

Retreat ceremony at 43rd Inf Div Hqs, Flak Kaserne, Augsburg, 1953
 
1950s
(Source: "A Guide to the 43d Infantry Division", orientation booklet published by the 43rd Inf Div in 1953.)
 
On July 10, 1951, the 43rd Infantry Division was alerted for service in Europe. Before sailing, the division scored highly in Exercise Southern Pine in North Carolina in the fall of 1951. Before winter set in, the division had moved into its positions in Bavaria, ready to resists any aggressive assault on the keystone of Western democracy.

The division's units are stationed in three German cities: Munich, Nürnberg and Augsburg.

1953 In Review
During 1953 the 43d "Winged Victory" Division added many new laurels to its long list of accomplishments.

High among the achievements was the winning of the coveted Leclerc Trophy for the United States by the 2d Battalion of the 102d Infantry Regiment. The shooting competion is one of the most rugged shooting courses that can be fired. To win the 102d defeated the champions from six other NATO nations. This was the first time that the United States has ever won the trophy
.
One of the highest honors to befall the 43d Division was the winning of the USAREUR Commander's Athletic Participation Trophy. This was accomplished by Winged Victorymen winning the USAREUR track and field meet and the USAREUR swimming championship. The Division also piled up many of its points by having excellent teams in baseball, soccer, tennis and golf.

Another group that brought fame to the 43d Division was the Winged Victory Chorus which for the second consecutive year won the title of "Best Chorus in Europe" by sweeping the USAREUR Soldier Singing Contest. The chorus has presented many concerts for civilians and has participated in some of the large music festivals throughout Europe.

Armed Forces Day in '53 was an interesting occasion. This was the first time since WWII that soldiers had paraded in the streets of Germany. All the Kasernes were open to the public and the Germans flocked to see the displays and equipment.

Training played the major role in the division's activities for the year. Starting with small unit training during the first part of the year the the problems became tougher and tougher. As a mark of achievement the top infantry battalion as judged by their scoring in the VII Corps tests is presented the Gold Rifles Award. This year the 2d Bn, 172d Infantry Regiment, won the honor by placing highest in the Corps.

The best artillery battalion in the Division is also presented an award -- the Standard of St. Barbara. It, like the infantry award, is presented to the battalion which makes the highest score in VII Corps tests. In '53 the standard was won by the 192d FA Bn.

As September rolled around the true test of Division's training was brought out as the Winged Victorymen took part in three large scale manuevers. The first and largest was the NATO Field Training Exercise "Monte Carlo." In this exercise the entrie division brought credit upon itself for the excellent manner in which it performed. It was the 43d Divison men that broke through the "Enemy" lines and reached the final objective.

In the other two exercises the division did an outstanding job. They were highly commended for their part in the VII Corps FTX "Harvest Moon."

The Division not only was outstanding in training and athletics but the men also did much to show the German people the generosity of the American way of life. Through the GYA (German Youth Activities) thousands of German children learned about Americans. The GYA is sponsored by the 43d Division and the variety of activities sponsored ranged from an American type Soap Box Derby to a Meistersinger Contest for promising young opera singers.

The soldiers of the 43d also did a wonderful job of supporting two of the outstanding charities that are well-known in the States. Over $31,000 was contributed towards the March of Dimes during 1953. In this campaign only one other unit topped the 43d. In response to the plea for funds by the American Red Cross, the Division led all the troops in USAREUR by contributing over $15,000. When funds were requested for the Army Emergency Relief program the entire Division threw in their support and as a result led all of the units stationed here by putting in over $17,000.

What was probably one of the brightest occasions during 1953 was "Operation Friendship." Under this program the men of the various units sponsored Christmas parties for German orphans and for the needy in the area. More than 10,000 children were guests of the servicemen at their kasernes. They were given dinners, shown movies, and received valued and needed gifts. The look in any of the children's eyes made all the effort worth while.

As 1953 drew to a close, the men who had served in the 43d Division throughout the year could look back and say, "We did a good job."

 
Division Organization
 
(Source: STATION LIST, August 1952 & August 1953)
UNIT STATION COMMENTS
Hq/Hq Co, 43rd Inf Div Flak Ksn, Augsburg  
43rd QM Co Sheridan Ksn, Augsburg  
743rd Ord Bn Flak Ksn, Augsburg  
43rd Div Band Flak Ksn, Augsburg  
43rd MP Co Flak Ksn, Augsburg  
43rd Repl Co Flak Ksn, Augsburg  
43rd Sig Co Flak Ksn, Augsburg  
     
102nd Inf Regt Sheridan Ksn, Augsburg  
169th Inf Regt Will Ksn, Munich
Flint Ksn, Bad Tölz (3rd Bn)
Monteith Bks, Nürnberg
moved to Nürnberg in June 1952?
172nd Inf Regt Warner Bks, Munich  
     
Hq/Hq Btry, 43rd Div Arty Flak Ksn, Augsburg  
103rd FA Bn Sheridan Ksn, Augsburg  
192nd FA Bn Flint Ksn, Bad Tölz
O'Brien Ksn, Schwabach
moved to Schwabach in June 1952?
206th FA Bn Will Ksn, Munich  
963rd FA Bn Sheridan Ksn, Augsburg  
169th AAA Bn Will Ksn, Munich  
     
143rd Tank Bn Henry Ksn, Munich  
43rd Recon Co Munich  
118th Engr Cbt Bn Henry Ksn, Munich  
118th Med Bn Warner Bks, Munich  

 
43rd Infantry Divison Redesignated 5th Infantry Division, May 1954
(Source: several STARS & STRIPES articles, May, 1954)
OLD DESIGNATION NEW DESIGNATION STATION
Hq/Hq Co, 43rd Inf Div Hq/Hq Co, 5th Inf Div Flak Ksn, Augsburg
43rd QM Co 5th QM Co Sheridan Ksn, Augsburg
743rd Ord Bn 705th Ord Bn Flak Ksn, Augsburg
43rd Div Band 5th Div Band Flak Ksn, Augsburg
43rd MP Co 5th MP Co Flak Ksn, Augsburg
43rd Repl Co 5th Repl Co Flak Ksn, Augsburg
43rd Sig Co 5th Sig Co Flak Ksn, Augsburg
     
102nd Inf Regt 11th Inf Regt Sheridan Ksn, Augsburg
169th Inf Regt (1) 39th Inf Regt Monteith Bks, Nürnberg
172nd Inf Regt 2nd Inf Regt Warner Bks, Munich
     
Hq/Hq Btry, 43rd Div Arty Hq/Hq Btry, 5th Div Arty Flak Ksn, Augsburg
103rd FA Bn 21st FA Bn Sheridan Ksn, Augsburg
192nd FA Bn (2) 26th FA Bn O'Brien Ksn, Schwabach
206th FA Bn 50th FA Bn Will Ksn, Munich
963rd FA Bn 19th FA Bn Sheridan Ksn, Augsburg
169th AAA Bn 47th AAA Bn Will Ksn, Munich
     
143rd Tank Bn 759th Tank Bn Henry Ksn, Munich
43rd Recon Co 5th Recon Co Munich
118th Engr Cbt Bn 7th Engr Cbt Bn Henry Ksn, Munich
118th Med Bn 5th Med Bn Warner Bks, Munich
(1) The 169th Inf Regt was redesignated as 39th Inf Regt and concurrently reassigned to the 9th Inf Div; the 10th Inf Div (formerly designated as the 109th Inf Div, 43rd Inf Div) was reassigned to the 5th Inf Div.
(2) The 192nd FA Bn was redesignated as 26th FA Bn and concurrently reassigned to the 9th Inf Div; the 46th FA Bn (formerly designated as the 109th FA Bn, 43rd Inf Div) was reassigned to the 5th Inf Div.

 
ADDITIONAL DUIs - 1950s

102nd Inf Regt

169th Inf Regt

172nd Inf Regt

 

 
(Source: Email from Paul Henry, Sr., Division Band, 1953)
I was in the 43rd Infantry Division Band most of 1953 in Flak Kaserne. Would be interested in finding any other band members that may be around. As one of about thirteen trumpet players in the band (since this was division HQ) every thirteen weeks I pulled duty as the bugler standing next to the cannon for retreat ceremonies.

 
43rd Inf Div Air Section
 
1952
(Source: STARS & STRIPES, September 14, 1952)
The 43rd Infantry Division air section is headed by Maj George G. Tillery, 43rd Division Air Officer. Capt William P. Sampson is the 43rd Div Artillery air officer. Capt Charles M. Grandell serves as the 43rd Div Headquarters Company air officer.

The Div Arty Air Section operates the airfield at the old Messerschmittt factory in Augsburg (Haunstetten).

 
1953
(Source: STARS & STRIPES, November 20, 1953)
The 43rd Inf Div air section recently initiated an aerial observer's course at the Augsburg airfield. The course includes both ground and aerial work.

In phase 1 students receive 16 hourse of ground instruction - aircraft safety and aircraft capabilities; servicing and mooring; reconnaissance and selection of airstrips; and conduct of artillery and mortar fire.

Phase 2 (20 hours of instruction) consists of actual flying time during which the student observer does practical work under simulated combat conditions - adjustment of artillery fire and both elementary and advanced observation are stressed.

 
Grape Leaf, Division newspaper
 
(Source: STARS & STRIPES, September 21, 1952)
The 43rd Infantry Division newspaper, GRAPE LEAF, and the Augsburg Post newspaper, AUGSBURG POST TIMES, are both printed by the Hieronymus Mühlberger company in Augsburg, one of the oldest printing firms in Germany. The company traces its origin back to 1470, only 24 years after the invention of movable type by Johannes Gutenberg (Wikipedia.org).

Each week the firm prints 3,500 copies of the POST TIMES and twice a month 5,000 copies of the GRAPE LEAF.

The printing company has also printed other publications for the Americans: orientation booklets for division replacements and graduation programs for the leadership school.

 
143rd Tank Battalion
 
143rd Tank Bn Pocket Patch
 
143rd Tank Bn DI
 
(Source: Email from Joseph A. Alari, 143rd Tank Bn, 43rd Inf Div, 1951-53)
I was a 1st Lt [SN 02201098] in the 143rd Tank Battalion during 1951 and 1953 stationed in Munich. The tank battalion was in Henry Kaserne that whole time.

An interesting note: The troop ship that took the unit to Bremehaven in October of 1951, sank an Argentine luxury liner in the fog just outside Bremerhaven. We delayed all day as we picked up the surveyors.

We then staged in Y-79 near Mannhein before going to Munich. I have a lot of photos and information on the 143rd Tank Battalion.

 

Related Links:
43rd Infantry Division "Winged Victory" Veterans Association - The purpose and objective of this association is to perpetuate the spirit, prestige, and memories of the 43d Infantry Division. The site's Guestbook has lots of entries by division members from the "Germany" era.