....:and valiant men went with him,
whose hearts God had touched.

1 Samuel 10:26

The 473rd Infantry Regiment In WWII


Sources

435th AA(AW) Bn. and 473rd Inf. Rgt. Assn
Write to: Secretary, LeRoy Good
5278 W. Gas Line Rd. Frankfort, IN 46041

Battle History 473rd United States Infantry, World War II-Edited by Lt. Jack F. Ramsberger-Italy 1945

Buffalo Soldiers In Italy-The Spring Offensive-April 5 to May 2, 1945, Hondon B. Hargrove, McFarland 1985

The War North Of Rome-June 1944-May 1945, Thomas R. Brooks, Sarpedon 1996

The U.S. Army in WWII-The Italian Campaign-Cassino To The Alps-Ernest F. Fisher, CMH 1977

19 DAYS, The Final Campaign Across Northwest Italy 14 April-2 May 1945
Published 1945 By Headquarters IV CORPS, U.S. ARMY Italy
Reprinted By The Battery Press 1987

Morning Reports, Hq. and Hq. Co., 2nd Battalion, 473rd Infantry Regiment; Dated from 1 February, 1945 to 30 April, 1945

Italian research in the area of battle by Marcello Biava

Personnel and personal records of Technician Fifth Grade Clifford Eugene Audinet-KIA April 26, 1945 at San Lorenzo della Costa, Italy

Introduction

Marcello Biava and I, Patrick Audinet became acquainted because of our mutual desire to know the history of the 473rd. I, because my father died while in action with the unit and Marcello because the 473rd helped to liberate Genova and it's surroundings. It is hoped that this page will serve both as a history and as a tribute to the brave men (See Honors Page) who fought with the 473rd in an all but forgotten part of the MTO (Mediterranean Theater of Operations) campaign.

The extraordinary thing about the soldiers of this regiment is that they had never been infantrymen. For 3 years they commanded, operated, and supported Anti Aircraft Artillery units on the march from North Africa to Northern Italy in supplying cover against the German and Italian Air Forces. The success of the AAA units and the U.S. Army Air Corps pilots at pushing those planes out of the sky was, in a sense, what got these ack-ack gunners into the infantry. With the fading of the Luftwaffe and the Aereonautica Nazionale Republicana their mission became less and less critical to the Italian campaign. At the same time, the intense fighting in the Italian mountain and coastal regions in bad weather, withering German defensive firepower and road destruction which limited the use of armor caused the need for ever more infantry. In January of 1945 the soldiers of four AAA Battalions took on, with minimal training, the toughest job in the Army-the infantryman.

In January of 1945, at Montecatini, Italy the four AAA-AWBtns (Anti Aircraft Artillery-Automatic Weapons Battalions) gathered to start training as the 3 battalions of the 473rd Infantry Regiment attached to IV Corps, 5th Army. They were divided as follows; Hq. and Hq. Co. of the 2nd Armored Group formed Hq. and Hq. Co. of the 473rd Infantry Regiment. The 434th and 435th AAA-AWBtns formed the 1st Battalion, initially held in reserve. The 532nd AAA-AWBtn formed the 2nd Battalion under the command of Lt. Col. Hampton H. Lisle. The 900th AAA-AWBtn formed the 3rd Battalion commanded by Major Paul Woodward. Hq. and Hq. Btry. of the 532nd formed Hq. and Hq. Co. of the 2nd Battalion. The 473rd was under the command of Col. Cronk. On 17 February Col. Cronk transferred to duties with the 5th Army Hq. and the 473rd was commanded by Col. William P. Yarborough who would lead the regiment to the end of the Italian campaign. On the 23rd of February the 473rd was officially attached to the 92nd (Buffalo) Infantry Division.

Italy Map from Michelin

Battle History of the 473rd Inf. Regt., Order of Battle - 92nd Infantry Division

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