Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Audie Murphy Day

For those of us born betwixt the Fall of the Wall and 911, we had never seen Great Satan unbound. Until Operation Iraqi Freedom, battles and history were to be avoided as old school stuff that would probably never happen again.

As "Rock of The Marne" blitzed through the largest Arab army in history in 20 days, her combat power was unparalled:

"An infantry division in name only, fielding 270 Abrams M1 tanks with mobile infantry that could be hastily formed into adhoc battle groups to handle a variety of missions"

Thunder Running into downtown Baghdad, even phoning up the Iraqi Minister of Misinformation at Palestine Hotel to request "Parking for 88 tanks" seemed like the debut of audacious American war fighting.

Actually - "Rock of the Marne" was following in the footsteps of their spiritual great grandfathers

"On 26 January 1945, 2d Lt. Murphy commanded Company B, which was attacked by 6 tanks and waves of infantry. 2d Lt. Murphy ordered his men to withdraw to prepared positions in a woods, while he remained forward at his command post and continued to give fire directions to the artillery by telephone.

"Behind him, to his right, 1 of our tank destroyers received a direct hit and began to burn. Its crew withdrew to the woods.

"2d Lt. Murphy continued to direct artillery fire which killed large numbers of the advancing enemy infantry. With the enemy tanks abreast of his position, 2d Lt. Murphy climbed on the burning tank destroyer, which was in danger of blowing up at any moment, and employed its .50 caliber machinegun against the enemy.

"He was alone and exposed to German fire from 3 sides, but his deadly fire killed dozens of Germans and caused their infantry attack to waver. The enemy tanks, losing infantry support, began to fall back. For an hour the Germans tried every available weapon to eliminate 2d Lt. Murphy, but he continued to hold his position and wiped out a squad which was trying to creep up unnoticed on his right flank.

"Germans reached as close as 10 yards, only to be mowed down by his fire. He received a leg wound, but ignored it and continued the single-handed fight until his ammunition was exhausted. He then made his way to his company, refused medical attention, and organized the company in a counterattack which forced the Germans to withdraw.

"His directing of artillery fire wiped out many of the enemy; he killed or wounded about 50. 2d Lt. Murphy's indomitable courage and his refusal to give an inch of ground saved his company from possible encirclement and destruction, and enabled it to hold the woods which had been the enemy's objective.

"The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, March 3, 1863, has awarded in the name of The Congress the MEDAL OF HONOR to LIEUTENANT AUDIE L. MURPHY, UNITED STATES ARMY

Today is the anniversary of Lt Murphy's heroic achievement - Americans everywhere should get on their knees and thank God Almighty for raising up this laughing race of free men.

Art - "Lt Murphy" by A. Reid


Paul said...

Well you learn something new every day. I knew of Audie Murphy as an actor - I remember seeing one of his films on the TV as a small boy. I don't recall much except that there was Audie Murphy (I think in a tank), apparently by himself, surrounded by an improbably large number of hostile forces. I was sufficiently impressed to remember his name after getting on for 40 years but I never realised he was a genuine war hero. Perhaps if he had been British...

Outlaw 13 said...

Thanks for reminding me sister. He's was a fellow Texan and I make a point to ask my Soldiers about LT Murphy and educate them when I get the chance.

He was a real hero.

maxx said...

Thanks for posting this.
What awesome people we are privleged and honored to call fellow citizens, eh?
Damn straight!
The things they have done.

Peter said...

Murph was born and raised just north of where I retired to. Anyone going through northeast Texas on I-30, betwixt Texarkana and Dallas should stop in Geenville, TX at the Audie Murphy Cotton Museum and check out the statue, even if you don't have time to go through the museum.

The statue has him carrying a German MG42, that's the gun he picked up after wiping out one machine gun nest with the lat of his ammo, and then going on to spoil the day of more Germans with their own weaponry.

I never quite understood just how Murph could walk with balls that big.

Rusty Walker said...

Thanks for posting this! He was the most decorated soldier of WWII. Audie Murphy, with his unlikely boyish face, was a true hero.

Anonymous said...

Please support our effort to bestow upon Audie Murphy, a posthumous presentation of the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom in rocongnition of his lifetime achivements to the Nation.
Please go here to sign:
Thank you!