Cold?

Well, I am the stick in the mud that really does not like snow and cold weather all that much. Anybody who spent any time in the Army will no doubt share that same dislike. In its infinite wisdom, the Army has a tendency towards having it major training exercises in the winter. The stated theory is the frozen ground will sustain less damage from the heavy equipment that the Army likes to run around in. Anytime the Army tears somebody’s ground up they have to pay for repair. That’s why they have their own ground on various installations nationwide so it can tear it up at will and nobody really cares all that much. But, even on their own ground, America’s oldest institution still loves to play out in the snow and really cold weather.

Having spent I think half of my 22 year career in uniform in snow and winter conditions, I’m kind of tired of it. I’ve lived in it, slept in it, cooked with it, melted and drank some of it, and did stuff I care not to admit to with it. Never bathed in it though (The German Army of WWII was taught to bath with the stuff – can’t make this up – I have pictures).

So, why do you care? Well, consider this: the winter of 1944 was the coldest winter on record in Europe. During WWII, a couple hundred American soldiers got surrounded in a town called Bastogne in Belgium. They were ill-equipped in every way to face the vastly stronger German army that surrounded them. No winter clothing, no hot food, very little ammunition, and virtually no medical supplies. They lived in those deplorable conditions, while under attack, for about a month. They persevered until US forces could get through German lines to relieve them.

The weather they endured was brutally colder than anything I’ve ever seen. They withstood a horrendous onslaught in brutally cold conditions. I doubt they like the winter much either.

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2 thoughts on “Cold?

  1. Scott,

    I can’t imagine what it must have been like in 1944, but I do know that while stationed in Korea, it was the coldest I have ever been and I am from Michigan.

    Neither Christian nor I like the cold. We do not miss the field at these temperatures.

    • Yes, I don’t miss the field either. I can remember many a Reforger in the Black Forest. Never been colder in my life, even in Indiana!

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