History of The United States Army's 117th Infantry Regiment

3rd Battalion - K Company

30th Infantry Division


Significant Events of the 117th Infantry Regiment


October 1942

The 30th Division (which included the 117th Infantry Regiment) begins rebuilding at Camp Blanding, Florida, under the command of Major General Leland S. Hobbs.

September - October 1943

The 30th Division (which included the 117th Infantry Regiment) performs Second Army Maneuvers in Tennessee

October 1943

The 30th Division (which included the 117th Infantry Regiment) sent to Camp Atterbury, Indiana, in preparation for deployment overseas.

February 1944

The 30th Division (which included the 117th Infantry Regiment) sent to Camp Myles Standish, Massachusetts, for staging to ships in Boston Harbor.

February 11, 1944

Main elements of the 117th Infantry Regiment leaves Boston Port of Embarkation for Europe, aboard the SS Argentina, SS Brazil & SS John Ericsson

February 22, 1944

The 117th Infantry Regiment arrives in Liverpool, England, and proceeds to south coast of England by train.

February - June 6, 1944

Intensive training period in England.

June 11, 1944

The 117th Infantry Regiment crossed the English Channel.

June 15, 1944

30th Division went into combat south of Isigny, relieving elements of the 101st A. B. Division and the 29th Infantry Division. Launched first attack and engaged in Hedgerow fighting with the Germans.

June 17, 1944

Col. Hammond D. Birks, Commanding Officer of the 120th Regiment, awarded a Silver Star Medal. The first man in the Division to receive this high award.

July 7, 1944

The 30th Division crossed the Vire River out of the Cherbourg Peninsula and liberated St. Jean-de-Daye, the 1st major town in Normandy to be liberated by the 30th Infantry Division. Continued Hedgerow fighting in the direction of St. Lo, France.

July 12-13, 1944

Designated as the lead unit in Operation Cobra, to spearhead the breakthrough at St. Lo, France.

July 15, 1944

Col. Edwin M. Sutherland assumes command of the 119th Regiment

July 24, 1944

Bombed by the 8th Air Force, in error, killing 25 men and wounding 131 men. Delayed jump-off for one day.

July 25, 1944

Bombed again, in error, by 8th Air Force, killing 111 men, including Lt. Gen. Leslie Mc Nair, and wounding 490 men. Operation Cobra took off despite these two tragic errors and losses. The Division headed south toward Tessy Sur Vire, France.

July 26, 1944

Brigadier General Raymond S. McLain relieved of duty as CO of the 30th Division Artillery, to assume command of the 90th Infantry Division.

July 26, 1944

Brigadier General  James M. Lewis assumes command of the 30th Division Artillery.

July 29, 1944

Colonel Walter M. Johnson assumes command of the 117th Regiment.

August 6-12, 1944

The Division headed swiftly by truck transport to the Mortain - St. Bartholmy area. The Battle of Mortain began with the 2nd Battalion of the 120th Regiment being surrounded on hill number 314 for 5 days. In the battle, the 30th Division engaged 4 Panther Divisions and destroyed many tanks. The Germans were pushed back sustaining heavy losses.

 German High Command declared this Battle to be the major turning point of the war, leading to the ultimate defeat of the German Army.

August 14, 1944

Started the 'Rat-Race' across northern France.

August 17, 1944

First contact made with the King's Own Scottish Battalion, 3rd Division, 2nd British Army, was made at Flers, France, at 16:30.

August 23, 1944

Evreux, France, is liberated.

August 25, 1944

Louviers, France, is liberated.

August 27, 1944

First troops of the 30th crossed the Seine River at Mantes-Gassicourt, France.

August 30, 1944

Pontoise, France, is liberated.

August 31, 1944

Pérrone, France, is liberated.

September 1, 1944

Cambrai, France, is liberated.

September 4, 1944

The 117th Infantry Regiment enter Belgium.

September 10, 1944

30th Division crossed the Meuse River at Vise and Liege, Belgium.

September 12, 1944

The 117th Infantry enters the Netherlands.

September 14, 1944

Liberated the City of Maastricht, Provincial Capital. 1st City in The Netherlands to be liberated.

September 19, 1944

The 117th Infantry Regiment enters into Germany near Horsbach.

September 24, 1944

Evacuation of Kerkrade, Netherlands, begins.

October 2, 1944

Attack on Siegfried Line at Aachen, Germany begins.

October 6, 1944

Colonel Birks transferred to 9th Infantry Division as Assistant Division Commanding Officer

October 16, 1944

Captured the City of Aachen, Germany, in conjunction with the 1st Infantry Division. First city in Germany to fall to the Allies.

October 18, 1944

Major General Raymond S. Mc Lain assumes command of the XIX Corps.

October 22, 1944

XIX Corps transferred into the newly formed Ninth Army under Lt. General William H. Simpson.

November 16, 1944

Drive into the Roer River Valley toward Jülich, Germany, begins.

December 18, 1944

The 117th Infantry Regiment leaves Germany to join in the Battle of the Bulge in the Ardennes Forrest at Malmedy, Belgium.

December 19, 1944

Along with other elements of the 30th Division,  the penetration of the 1st SS Panzer Division was stopped and forced back at Stavelot-Stoumont-La Gleize-Malmedy, Belgium.

December 18, 1944

Col. Russell A. Baker assumes command of the 119th Infantry Regiment

December 24, 1944

La Gleize, Belgium, is retaken.

January 13, 1945

30th Division launched the counteroffensive to return the front line to original position as of December 16, 1944.

January 26, 1945

St. Vith, Belgium retaken.

January 30, 1945

Line of the Breakthrough returned to original line.

February 2, 1945

30th Division returns to original Roer River position in Germany.

February 3, 1945

30th Division Transferred from 1st Army to 9th Army.

February 23, 1945

The Roer River was successfully crossed near Jülich, Germany.

March 3, 1945

Division Practices River Crossing Training at Echt, Netherlands.

March 24, 1945

30th Division crossed the Rhine River. March toward Elbe River Begins.

April 1, 1945

30th Division motorized for assault toward Berlin.

April 7, 1945

Hamelin, Germany, captured

April 10, 1945

Hanover, Germany, captured

April 12, 1945

Braunshweig (Brunswick), Germany, captured

April 12, 1945

30th Division reached the Elbe River, 40 miles SW of Berlin.

April 18, 1945

Captured the City of Magdeburg, Germany, one of the easternmost penetrations in the Ninth Army sector.

April 25, 1945

Lt. General Kurt von Dittmar surrenders to 117th Infantry Regiment.

May 4, 1945

Russians were contacted by 120th Infantry Regiment at Grunewald, Germany near the Elbe River.

May 6, 1945

The 117th Infantry Regiment makes contact with the Russians

May 7, 1945

Germany Surrenders

May 8, 1945

Victory in Europe

May 9, 1945

30th Infantry Division starts occupation duties in Germany along the Czech Boarder.

June 1945

30th Infantry Division was alerted for deployment for action in Japan.

August 16-21, 1945

The 117th Infantry Regiment returns to the U.S.A. aboard the HMS Queen Mary

November 25, 1945

The 117th Infantry Regiment is deactivated at Ft. Jackson, S.C.




Additional Pages (Click Below)


117th Infantry Regiment's Military Personnel Records Destroyed

Order of Battle for the 30th Infantry Division

Campaigns in European Theater of War

Significant Combat Events of the 117th Infantry Regiment

Capture of Lieutenant General Kurt von Dittmar
From Normandy to the Elbe Booklet
Sgt. Frank DeClerck - Prayer Going Into Battle

K Company Roster - 117th Infantry Regiment - June 1944 - August 1945

117th Infantry Regiment at the Battle of the Bulge
117th Infantry Regiment World War II Photos
Combat History of First Lieutenant Cyril B. Spicer of the 117th Infantry Regiment
The Breakers,  1942-1943 Yearbook of the 117th Infantry Regiment


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Moline, Illinois U.S.A.

September 18, 2019

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