July 17-18 The division assembled in the Campobello area closing at 1330 July 18. All detachments then present in Sicily reverted. The 2-AD was now organized as follows, HQs 2-AD; 82-Recon Bn (less one recon Co); 41-AIR; 66-AR; 3/67-AR (plus 3rd Plat Dog attached); 1-RB; 4-RB; 17-ECB (less 2 Cos and HQ Det); 17-FAB; 78-FAB; Baker and Charlie 48-Medic Bn; 106-AAA (SP); Det. 2-AD Maintenance Bn and Supply Bn; Det. 51-Medic Bn and 36-Amb Bn. The objective of the 7-A was announced as Palermo was captured, the 2-AD being sent to army reserve. The 2-AD was given the mission of being prepared to exploit the successes of the assault units or to extend the envelopment through Castelvetrano. The 82-Recon Bn was detached from the division and given the mission to cover the front of the Provisional Corps. The displacement of the division westward was initiated during the night of 18-19 July.

 Operation Husky - Invasion of Sicily, Italy, July-August 1943. Study in Still Life. Tired and foot-weary from his march to Brolo, Sicily, Sergeant Norwood Dorman falls into the pose of the statue in this memorial to the Italian soldier of World War I

July 19-20 The movement to the west continued by bounds. The division completed displacement from Campobello to Agrigento where it was held pending orders of the CG 7-A. Orders were received about noon assigning the 2-AD to the Provisional Corps. During the afternoon of July 20 and the night 20-21, the division moved from Agrigento to the march assembly areas in the vicinity of Ribera. The 1-RB and the 4-RB were relieved from attachment to the division and orders were received to transport this force to the Line of Departure for their attack against Catelvetrano. The 62-FAB and the 20-ECB were attached on that day to the 2-AD.

July 21 During the morning of July 21, the leading elements of the division had reached the Belice River where they were held pending the capture of Castelvetrano. The mission of taking this city was assigned to Task Force X under the CG Provisional Corps. Task Force X consisted of the 39-RCT, the 77-FAB, the 1-RB, and the 4-RB. The city was captured during the afternoon and the force continued the attack in the direction of Marsala. This action secured our left flank and rear and covered our turn to the north against Palermo. During the evening, orders were received to assemble northeast of Castelvetrano and attack at 2200. The CG 2-AD ordered to advance, CCA in the lead, CCB following by bounds to phase lines prepared to extend envelopment. The entire movement from Agrigento to the assembly areas west of Belice River was made along one road in the face of the most difficult conditions. All the important bridges had been blown out necessitating by-passes through precipitous gorges or in some cases through railway tunnels. Engineers worked unceasingly on these by-passes improving them, widening the trails, and clearing mines, both on the roads and on adjoining shoulders and fields. In addition, the movement was made across the rear of the 3-ID through the rear elements of the 82-A/B and in the later stage on the same road with the two Ranger Battalions and 39-RCT shuttling forward into an assembly position for the attack on Castelvetrano. The division, short as it was on transportation, furnished MT for the move of the two Ranger Battalions.

American soldiers looking at a dead German pilot and his wrecked plane near Gela, Sicily. (12 Jul 43)

July 22 At 0600, the leading elements of the division moved out to the attack. Each defile was strongly defended by AT weapons and machine guns cleverly emplaced and protected by infantry. Each of these elements had to be reduced one by one. Not until surrounded by infantry and shelled by artillery and/or tanks was there any sign of surrender. For the most part, the AT guns were manned by Germans, and the infantry protection was furnished by Italians. These actions were principally advance guard handled by the leading elements of the division and the recon companies of the 82-Recon. Leading elements of the division on arrival at the pass 4 miles northeast of San Guisseppe were held up by a determined defense in depth by AT guns including German 88-MMs. Those guns were well emplaced in the sides of the canyons, cleverly concealed, and in an extremely strong natural position. This resistance was overcome by flanking action of dismounted patrols covered by artillery, tank, and supporting cannon gunfire. In the meantime, recon was being pushed around the flanks, to determine routes to bypass the defile. The division remained on the Corps phase line until 2000 when it was ordered to enter Palermo. Guards were placed on docks, banks, and other important buildings and utilities to prevent their destruction, active patrolling was conducted during the night. On arrival at Camporeale, CCB was directed to extend the envelopment to the northwest with the mission to clean out resistance in that area and to be prepared to assist CCA in the capture of Palermo. CCB, at that time, consisted of the 1/41-AIR; Charlie 66-AR; 3/67-AR (+ 2 Platoons of Easy Co attached); 78-FAB, and Baker 17-ECB (+ one Plat 20-ECB attached).



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