807th Tank Destroyer Battalion

Unit History:  Activated 1 March, 1942  at Camp Cooke, California.  Arrived Liverpool, England, on 23 August, 1944 and at Utah Beach on 18 September.  Fought in Metz sector from September to November.  Attacked toward Saarlautern in November and December.  Battled German Nordwind offensive in January 1945.  Shifted north for offensive to the Rhine in March.  Defended Rhine River bridges in April and converted to the M18 in time to join the drive through Bavaria late in the month.  Reached vicinity of Salzburg, Austria, in early May.  Attached to: 101st Airborne Division; 5th, 30th, 35th, 75th, 83d, 86th, 90th, 95th, 100th Infantry divisions; 3d Cavalry Group.  History text from the book The Tank Killers by Harry Yeide.  Used by permission.

Attachments By Date:

29 Sep 44-11 Oct 44     83rd Infantry Division (Thunderbolt)

17 Dec 44-21 Dec 44    5th Infantry Division (Red Diamond)

20 Dec 44-24 Dec 44    90th Infantry Division (Tough Hombres)

20 Jan 45-25 Feb 45     101st Airborne Division (Screaming Eagle)

3 Mar 45-10 Mar 45      35th Infantry Division (Santa Fe)

18 Mar 45-27 Mar 45    30th Infantry Division (Old Hickory)

25 Mar 45-29 Mar 45    75th Infantry Division

21 Apr 45-10 May 45    86th Infantry Division (Blackhawk)

Combat Equipment: 10/44 – Towed 3″ Gun; 4/45 – M18

Commanding Officers:  Lt Col. Carlton K. Smith

Code Name/s:  Hightight

Campaign Credits:  Rhineland……………………Sept. 15, 1944 to Mar. 21, 1945

                               Ardennes-Alsace…………..Dec. 16, 1944 to Jan 25, 1945

                               Central Europe……………..Mar. 22, to May 11, 1945

Awards:  Company A – Croix de Guerre with Silver-Gilt Star, WWII, Streamer embroidered “Moselle River”.

Location August 1945:  Camp Cooke, CA

Additional Information/Materials:

1.)   807th Tank Destroyer Battalion History – This official 30 page document includes a History of the unit, Personnel Strength, Locations and Marches as well as Campaigns and Battles, KIA, WIA, Losses, Decorations and a Commendation from the 12th Tank Destroyer Group Commander.  A few areas are hard to read so if you have a question, just use the Contact Link on the Homepage and I will try to help.  Courtesy of Charlotte Buchanan.

2.)  Unit History Booklet “807th Tank Destroyer Battalion, March 1942 – September 1945”. A booklet published after the war, which contains many names throughout the text along with rosters, a memoriam page and a major awards listing.  Courtesy of the Tank Destroyer Association by L. L. Gill, TDA Historian.

                          Part 1……………………………………………17 Pages

                   (Colored version of the Route Map is available below)

                          Part 2……………………………………………18 Pages

3.)   Transfer Listing from the 608th TD Bn. to the 807th TD Bn.  The 608th was deactivated on Dec. 20, 1943 and its personnel were sent primarily to four other units.  They were the 607th, 610th, 643rd, and 807th.  This is a portion of the 608th’s personnel list provided to me by Bernie Haas and reflects only the men that went to the 807th. 

4.)   Poems of a Tank Destroyer Veteran of WWII – written by Edwin W. Saeger of Rock Rapids, IA, who was a member of B Company of the 807th.  The book has 168 pages and six sections of poems about the following subjects: Military, Nature, Religious, Past History, Humorous and Family.  It also has B & W photos throughout.

5.)   Unit Reports – from the Combined Arms Research Library of the Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

         Oct. 1 to 31, 1944…………….1 Pages (Summary of Operations)

         Nov. 1-30, 1944……………….7 Pages (After Action Report)

         Dec. 1 to 31, 1944……………8 Pages (Summary of Operations)

         Mar. 1 to 31, 1945…………..30 Pages (S-3 Report)

6.)  Miscellaneous Documents – from the Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library, Museum and Boyhood Home, Abilene, Kansas.

        General Orders #72, Unit Assignments, July 21, 1943………………………..2 Pages

        Special Orders #22, Transfers to 807th, March 16, 1945……………………..2 Pages

        Commendation Letter from Col. Deery, CO, 12th TD Gp, Apr. 5, 1945……1 Page

7.)  Staff Officers of the 807th – Shown L to R are Lt. Joseph L. Burns, Capt. Jerome Cohen, Maj. Stanley Sheppard, Lt. Col. Carlton Smith (CO), Maj. Alexander Woodside, Capt Albert Vogel, and Lt. William Barr.  Photo courtesy of Tom Pyrcz.

8.)  Reunion Photo 2001 – Taken during the unit’s reunion held in Louisville, Kentucky.  Photo courtesy of Tom Pyrcz.

9.)  Reunion Photo 2007 – Taken at what was promoted as the “All WWII TD Reunion” held in Gettysburg, PA, which was held on June 7th – 9th. The event was organized by Warren Beach (819th) and Nick Waskul (807th). You can see in the photo, only eight or nine of the men were veterans of WWII. As time went on, fewer and fewer of the veterans from a single unit were able to attend. It was inevitable that a gathering of all men that could make it, would eventually be held. The man with the mustache standing in the front row, on far right is thought to have been a Jewish man that was liberated by the 807th. Courtesy of Cheryl Waskul Schaeffer. 

*Additional reunions we know of were held in Dearborn, Michigan, June 1st – 4th, 2006 and in Romulus, Michigan August 14th – 17th 2008.

10.)  A Company Group Photo – Taken at Fort Dix, New Jersey, probably just prior to them shipping out for England in August of 1944.  Herman F. McAfoose has been identified by his granddaughter, Renee Repak, who supplied the photo.  Herman is standing in the 3rd row from the front, 35th man from the left. Nicholas Waskul who also served in A Co., is shown in the front row, 5th from the left. Photo courtesy Renee Repak.

11.)  Recon Company Group Photo – Taken by C. Ekmark of San Antonio, Texas.  Capt. J.W. Slusser is indentified as the Commanding Officer.  Provided courtesy of Paul Stevens.

12.)  HQ Company Group Photo – Taken at Fort Dix, New Jersey and probably just before they shipped overseas. Provided courtesy of Paul Stevens.

13.)  Route Map of the 807th – This is the colored version of the route map from the Unit History Booklet listed above. The map also includes a listing of major history events for the unit with dates for each. Courtesy of William Ubl.

14.)  Photo Gallery

15.) Interview with Charlie D. Worthington – Charlie served as an assistant driver and radio operator in Company B of the 807th. His grandson, Jeffrey Stone, has done a nice job preserving his grandfather’s memories in the video, which is posted on YouTube. Thank you Jeff for sharing it.