World War II: My Experiences as Captain of Company D, 331st Infantry, 83rd Division
The wartime memoirs of Harry C. Gravelyn, Captain of Company D, 331st Infantry, 83rd “Thunderbolt” Infantry Division, United States Army, during World War II. More
Harry C. Gravelyn was Captain of Company D, 331st Infantry, 83rd “Thunderbolt” Infantry Division, United States Army, during World War II. He served in active combat from the landing at Normandy until a mortar took him out in Petite Langlir, Belgium, during the Battle of the Bulge. These are his wartime memoirs, which he started working on when he retired in his sixties and was still adding to at age ninety six, right up until the last moment before publishing.
This isn’t the Hollywood version of war. This is matter-of-fact war from the viewpoint of the “grunts,” the infantrymen, who in every war in every time, slog, crawl, and fight through rain, snow, mud, and dead bodies until they either die or stand on the contested ground and say, “Okay, this is ours now,” in order that famous generals can claim victory.
More than 63,000 words, with a foreword by his son, Jim Gravelyn, this first-person account covering everything from pre-war training in the Michigan National Guard to the trip home on a hospital ship makes for fascinating reading. The book is hyperbole free but will nevertheless have you shaking your head in amazement, horror, or amusement at various times, and leave you with a sense of actually having been there in the European Theatre of Operations in World War II, as a grunt.
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