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Home  >  Battle of Hatten-Rittershoffen  >  14-20 January 

Battle of Hatten-Rittershoffen: War of attrition in the villages


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Bitter house-to-house fighting continued in Hatten during 14 January. A combined infantry-tank assault by the Americans attempted to clear the Germans from the north-west of the village and sever the supply line to Rittershoffen. This portion of the attack was led by A Company, 19th Armored Infantry Battalion.


‘They met intense small arms, sniper, bazooka and direct tank fire. Houses were taken one by one by firing bazookas to make holes in the walls, throwing hand grenades and mouse-holing from house to house. The two tanks fired into the houses and sprayed the street with machine gun fire. Lt Robert M Donovan and Pfc Edward J Pahel threw grenades at exposed members of a German tank crew, then Pvt Benjamin J Hendrickson and Pfc Pahel moved in with a bazooka and put the tank out of action.


The attack continued slowly and under heavy fire…. The Germans counter-attacked with tanks and infantry.’

AAR 19th Armored Infantry Battalion (Carter p187)

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