mutt71
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Info request re: Litter Bearers

Sun Jan 16, 2011 20:55

Hi, I am curious about Litter Bearers assigned to Infantry Units in Normandy. Would they have the same equipment and insignia, helmet markings, etc. as a Medic in the same unit would? I see all kinds of information on the Medics, but, only the number and ranks of the Litter Bearers. Any assistance is appreciated.

GliderRiderMedic
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Mon Jan 17, 2011 01:29

Generally, as I understand it, the litterbearers (at least in the unit we portray) were assigned the same equipment as the medics.

BTW, there were no standardized "helmet markings". The idea that all medics and litterbearers had markings on their helmets is a misguided notion. It varied on a unit basis. They would have the same Geneva convention protections as the medics, chaplains, etc so the markings would be the same for a given unit. For the 326th at least the litterbearers were generally privates or PFCs.

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sgtpeter
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Mon Jan 17, 2011 06:50

Hi Mutt -

You have asked a good question. I can confirm that what Steve said is correct. Litter bearers would have been issued the same medical kit equipment as Company Aid Men.

Per TO&E 7-11, Medical Detachment, Infantry Regiment, dated 26 Feb 1944, each INF BN had 12 litter bearers with an MOS of 657 which TM12-427 July 1944 lists as Medical Aidman and includes "First-Aid Man, Medical Basic, Hospital Orderly, Medical Corpsman (AAF) and Litter Bearer". Responsibilites include "Administers first-aid treatment to sick, injured or wounded....Must have received medical basic training."

Each INF BN had 32 enlisted men assigned to the medical detachment including the 12 litter bearers. The equipment list of a BN Aid Station included (2) Medical NCO kits and (30) Medical Private's kits - a total of 32 kits for enlisted medical soldiers. Each of the kits included 2 litter carrying straps that would attach to the kit suspenders.

The training outline for how and what new Soldiers are taught is outlined in MTP8-101. The June 1944 version says this about litter bearers -

"The litter bearers operate as 2 man or 4 man litter squads. They operate within the sector or zone of actions to which assigned, and search for casualties who are not able to walk. They apply necessary emergency treatment if this has not been previously accomplished by the company aid man [in other words combat medics]. They promptly carry wounded who are not able to walk to the battalion aid station."

One interesting note about the MTP is that it does not explicitly mention MOS 657 but does mention training for basic medical soldier as MOS 521. TM12-427 labels 521 as a basic trainee - personnel who are in basic training or not qualified for a MOS. I think it is safe to assume that company aid men and litter bearers would have followed this training program.
Peter

'43 Dodge WC54
piles of smelly green stuff
a couple of band-aids

mutt71
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Mon Jan 17, 2011 18:54

Thanks to both of you for the answer to my question. It is a big help!

GliderRiderMedic
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Tue Jan 18, 2011 00:06

mutt71 wrote:Thanks to both of you for the answer to my question. It is a big help!

Not a problem. If we can be of further assistance, please let me know. If you have any specific questions, let me know and I can ask the litter bearer veteran that I know.

mutt71
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Fri Jan 21, 2011 02:16

Thanks Steve. I was a re enactor in the 80's and 90's. I was a German Infantryman, Grenadier and Feldgendarmerie. I also did a US MP impression as well. Because of age and weight issues, I stopped re enacting, in the mid 90's.

I have been putting together a 1/6th scale 104th Medical Bn., over the last several years and have been doing Family Day at the US D-Day Memorial in Bedford VA. I love this site, because I can get more information here than anywhere else. I have been able put together many Medics, Surgeons, Nurses and wounded soldiers (100+ figures), several vehicles, including a WC-54 and several Ambulance Jeeps, as well as several M-1934 Pyramid Tents. I wanted to add litter bearers and do an accurate Aid Station and like any good re enactor want to make sure that I do it right.
Thanks again.

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sgtpeter
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Fri Jan 21, 2011 02:25

That sounds like a great idea doing it in 1/6 scale. Can you post some photos for us the next time you setup your display?
Peter

'43 Dodge WC54
piles of smelly green stuff
a couple of band-aids

GliderRiderMedic
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Fri Jan 21, 2011 06:15

sgtpeter wrote:That sounds like a great idea doing it in 1/6 scale. Can you post some photos for us the next time you setup your display?


I think that would be a very interesting display. I never thought about a diorama to supplement displays despite a long history of building model railroads.

mutt71
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Wed Jan 26, 2011 03:44

Here are a few photos of past events held at the WWII D-Day Memorial in Bedford VA.

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sgtpeter
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Wed Jan 26, 2011 04:17

WELL DONE!!!

That really looks great!

I have to ask where you got the WC54?
Peter

'43 Dodge WC54
piles of smelly green stuff
a couple of band-aids

GliderRiderMedic
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Wed Jan 26, 2011 06:59

Very nice.

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LOZ
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Wed Jan 26, 2011 23:15

1/16th sound like a good idea, better than dragging all my crap every other weekend and taking three days to put it away again.

good pic's

mutt71
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Re: Info request re: Litter Bearers

Thu Jan 27, 2011 02:26

Thank you for the positive comments.
The WC-54 is a piece that I bought from a guy in Texas. Not sure if he sells them anymore. I used a 21st Century Command car in 1/6th scale to "update" some of the details and scratch built other details.
To be honest with you, I carried around less as a reenactor that I ever do in 1/6th. I find that set up time and tear down is the most time consuming, not to mention research, searching for the right uniforms and equipment, etc. and then getting everything on the figures, etc.
I love it though. It is a lot of fun. We are planning another even this year in New Bedford MA. I'll post some pics from that even and post them up.

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