Page 2 of 2
Posted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 10:29
Peter,well spotted iv'e had a copy of the 1st photo for years and never looked that closely before,i think your right about the 2 guys in the other photo, thanks matt.
Posted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 18:53
BTW ... if that is CPT Lacy, he is the winner of the DSC for his actions in the surf on Omaha Beach, 6 Jun 1944.
CPT Lacy biography
Posted: Sat Aug 16, 2008 14:43
That photo is indeed CH Joseph R Lacy along with Col John C Raaen. As far as the ranger medic goes as per the original post. The 5th Ranger Battalion did not have "ranger medics", the medics that you see with the Rangers are Army medics who were attached to Ranger Companies. We have an entire archive built up (kinda like you guys) on the 5th Ranger Battalion. CH Lacy was assigned to the 5th Rangers the day before the D Day Invasion on June 6. The rangers remarked amongst themselves that he would not be able to keep up once they reached Normandy. CH Lacy told the rangers not to worry that he would see them at the link up site. To this day 5th Ranger veterans still talk about watching CH Lacy running up and down Omaha beach under fire taking care and dragging soldiers to safety.
Posted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 13:03
I am posting some other pics of CH Lacy for everyone.
Posted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 13:38
I have looked a little closer at the photograph posted by Matt, and I must confess that I have doubts as to whether that is in fact Captain Lacy carrying the supposed Medical Mortar Tube.
If you look carefully at his arm in the picture, there seems to be rank chevrons on the Field Jacket, indicating that this man is in fact an NCO, and not Capt. Lacy as we had first assumed. Obviously, the arm may in fact not belong to Lacy, but the angles for this all seem to be correct.
I would certainly welcome any comments on this...
Posted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 14:53
I would agree Ben, given the fact that the gentleman in question looks to be taller and thinner than CPT. Lacy. This could be the Ranger Medic detachment.
Matt, if you could email me the original picture I will be glad to put it out to the WWII Ranger Battalions Assoc. Sons & Daughters, along with our group and find out what the call is. If you are willing pm me for my email addy.
Posted: Wed Aug 20, 2008 14:56
Apart from the main theme, i.e. those 'special' 60mm ammo containers filled with medical goodies, another question that I never received a satisfactory reply to is the one dealing with helmets adorned with Geneva Convention symbols on D-Day !
The soldier in LCA 1377 is apparently wearing such a helmet ! When I found this picture (btw, the website Peter referred to is "Strictly G.I.") I showed it and discussed the matter with John Raaen, and also showed it to Jimmy Greene (both 5th Ranger Vets) . Neither would confirm that this was a general rule on D-Day ... during later interviews with other Vets such as Tom Herring, he said he wasn't sure Rangers did wear such helmets ... the only way to find out is probably scrutinizing AAR, GO, or other vintage documents ... the question is of course not restricted to Rangers, but certainly also applies to other Army units ...
This was and remains a great 'thread', don't you think ?
Regards - Alain
Posted: Wed Aug 20, 2008 17:49
I am in the process of researching this. I have in my possession copies of the original AAR's of the 5th Rangers. It has always been my understanding from many 5th vets that the Rangers did not have medics. The pic that you see of the medic's is actual Army medic's that were detached and assigned to the Ranger units. These could have been medics assigned to the 29th Infantry Division or 5th Army, but my husband disagree's with me (although he says he may be wrong...LOL). He thought that the Ranger medic's had to go through Ranger training. I will also email some of my WWII Ranger buddies and see what they say. If the former is right and they were just attached that would explain the Geneva Convention markings, (although in many accounts I have read, the Germans did not honor the Geneva Conventions for medical personnel). I will also check the Geneva Conventions on this issue, I believe that I have access to them as a military member (I work/volunteer for the Army). I let you know what I discover.
Posted: Wed Aug 20, 2008 18:30
After going through some of our research, I have the following information.
"Combat Medical Corpsman's Gear
World War II Combat Medics were the angels of the battlefield… and today are as sentimentally regarded as Coca Cola, Ernie Pyle, and “Moonlight Serenade.” Ranger training for the 2nd and 5th Battalions included cliff climbing, beach invasion and boat team drilling, demolitions, and hand to hand combat with an M3 combat “trench” knife. Imagine that very specialized training plus the grueling and often depressing responsibility of being a medic. In 1929, the Geneva Convention standardized combat insignia for all non-combatant troops. This insignia was very simply a white armband made of cotton muslin with a red cross. Every Medic, Corpsman, Chaplain, and Rabbi was to wear one in combat to designate their Geneva Convention protected status. Photos of 5th Ranger medics show this brassard being worn, as per regulation. Each and every Medical Detachment, whatever the size, was allowed to authorize their own in-theatre helmet markings. This was done by some units in anticipation of enemy combatants not firing on Medical personnel, and in some units it was not. As discussed with many professional as well as amateur World War II European Theatre Ranger historians, it is an established fact that Medics of the 2nd Ranger Battalion did not wear any distinguished helmet markings and Medics of the 5th Ranger Battalion all wore, according to several photos, the same regulation helmet marking. Markings in Europe ranged from four circles, four squares, one circle, etc. with the red cross in the center. The 5th Ranger marking is one solitary circle on the front of the helmet shell, painted slightly higher on the crown than centered on the helmet front. Squad-level Medics were generally PFC’s. or T/5’s, while higher ranking Medics served as technicians, with a Captain serving as the Battalion Surgeon and commander of the Ranger Battalion Medical Detachment.
Medical equipment within the 5th Ranger Battalion was no different than in any other Infantry unit. Like most Combat Medics in the European Theatre, 5th Medics would have generally worn an issued Medic pouch that would have spring clips to be hooked to their issue pistol belts or more commonly to an issue “litter” strap. Some squad level Medics would have undoubtedly worn the M1929 litter suspenders, re-issued for World War I as a platform to attach two medical pouches. This rig would be secured on the front and rear by two short “cantle” straps. This would most likely be the more typical gear for the invasion, while later in theatre, and in attempts to move fast with a rifle squad, a bag with shoulder strap would be more practical. Additionally, all Combat Medics carried two canteens; one for themselves and one for Medical use with a patient. Other than this special gear, Ranger Medics wore all the gear and uniforms of a regular 5th Ranger, to include the M1928 haversack with a pistol belt and personal first-aid dressing pouch and the orange lozenge marking on the rear of their helmet shell. It is also important to note that the wearing of any combat sidearm by Medics is strictly prohibited. There is no photographic documentation of real 5th Ranger Medics carrying M1911A1 side arms, and this practice is already far over-done by living historians."
This is a direct qoute from The 5th Ranger Battalion Research Compendium Volume I. Which was compiled and edited by Tom Frost (one of our members) from all the research that has been gathered over the years....so I was wrong and hubby was right..LOL. I will also post any responses recieved from the other people I have emailed.