Battery C Training Photographs
All photographs were taken and all captions were written by Rupert D. Boyatt during the 191st Battalion's training in California. Although only one photograph identifies a location, the Battalion and Battery C were at the following locations in California:
December 26, 1941 - Battalion arrives at East Garrison,
Early months of 1942 - West Coast defense
Late June, 1942 - C Battery was sent to Desert Training Center
August 13, 1942 - Desert Maneuvers
October 12, 1942 - Camp Roberts for additional training
March 15, 1943 - Fort Ord to practice for Bn Test I
May 20, 1943 - Field exercise at Hunter-Liggett Military Reservation
June 7, 1943 - Field Exercise for 3 days at Hunter Liggettt Military Reservation
Oct 13, 1943 - Corps Test at Hunter Liggett Military Reservation for 3 days
February 24, 1944 - The Battalion left Camp Robert for the Louisiana Maneuver area
All Photographs on this page have been contributed by Vera Boyatt.
A SOLDIER'S WORLD This essay about the
191st's involvement in the Battle of the Buldge was written by Rupert D.
Boyatt as an English assignment shortly after he was discharged.
Click on a photograph to see a larger image, Use your Back Button to return to this page.
|Tha lanyard has just been pulled on this gun but the powder hasen't exploded yet. Notice the strained expressions of the men. The concussion from the shot nearly knocks you down. See the expression of the man on the far side of the gun. He has pulled the lanyard. The big man is Chief of Section and he has just swung his arm down for the gun to be fired, then turned his face away from the gun.|
|This gun just went off. Notice how dust and straw is kicked up in front of the gun and in the road.|
|This a rear view of one of the guns in full recoil from the blast of a shot. We have four of these guns. They weight four ton and shoot a ninety-six pound shell. They are known as Howitzers.|
|Another one just sent off.|
|All four guns have just fired.|
|The gun has just been fired. Notice how the barrel has recoiled down the slides. The shot jarred me so bad I couldn't hold the camera.|
|The man is Harold Everett.|
||Rupert Boyatt with jeep laying wire - training at Camp Roberts-Hunter Liggett|
|Thats me away over on the right. Thats Sargant Jackson of the
Instrument Section in the back beside me. We had just gotten to Hunter
Liggett and it was pretty cold. All
belong to my section but Sgt. Jackson and he has a section of his own to look after. He has four corporals and their privates under him. I have two corporals and fourteen
|The Wire Team: They are a rough and ready bunch but awfully
good boys. They are from left to right:
Rogers, a Georgia boy, Everett from Maryville, Eckert from N.Y., Swagerty from Knoxville On top: DeZigo, N.Y., Abbott from Kingsports, Tenn., and Littlepage, a Texan.
|Carrigan, Woods and Woods.
Looking from the rear of our mess hall, down the rows of barrics to the parade field. The building on the right with the man in the door is our day room.
|A card game in the field.|
|Dinner at our camp in the woods. Don't let the sun fool you, it was pretty cold.|
|The chow line at dinner.|
|One of our camps in the desert. The tents were put up for shade.|
|Another of our desert camps. I slept between the jeep and beep|
|Another road we made across the desert.|
|Getting ready for a desert inspection. These men are in my section|
A SOLDIER'S WORLD
The sky was gray with thick solid clouds that shed cold drops of rain. The rain pecked against steel helmets and splashed off soggy raincoats into
muddy puddles. The cold air was heavy with moisture and soaked into the flesh, making the joints stiff and the muscles shiver. It had been raining
for several days, and water stood in the furrows of the plowed fields and dripped from the bare trees. Every ditch and gulch was brim full of swirling
muddy water. To the soldiers sloshing wearily down the narrow road, it seemed as though the world contained nothing but cold oozing mud and
miserable soaking water.
A thick dusk began to settle over the water enclosed
land, and the rain changed to a fine mist, which was pushed along by a
slow, cold wind. Hands
grew numb from clutching the cold wet steel of rifles. Feeling had left the feet long before, and the skin had turned a bluish green. A depressed
feeling crept through the body and left the mind empty and lost. Had these soldiers ever been alive? Was there a God, or had there ever been one? They were forsaken beings.
A low heavy drone suddenly filled the air.
The soldiers ran from the road and fell into the mud and water of the fields.
An orange flash leaped
from the ground, and a splitting crash ripped along the ground. Shrapnel tore through the trees along the road and thudded into the mud. All was
quiet for a few seconds: then the heavy drone filled the air again, much louder this time. Orange flashes sprouted up along the road and out in the
fields on both sides. Sheets of mud and water rose into the air and then pelted back to the earth.
Night had settled heavy and thick. The barrage
had ended, and the call of " Medic" drifted through the darkness.
Out in the field could be heard
the heavy ragged breathing of a man with punctured lungs. Near the road another man thrashed in the mud with his arms and legs in his last movements.
Here and there Medics stumbled over soft bulks huddled in the mud and water. The Medics did what they could and moved on. The soldiers assembled on the road again in squads. Within a few minutes they started off through the night to meet whatever it might offer. These soldiers were not brave heroes, but miserable men afraid they would realize no better life. Any one of them would gladly sacrificed a hand or a foot if he were certain he could leave this misery. Only the instinct for survival and the hope of better things keep a soldier moving within his world.
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