Trois-Ponts, December 25, 1944

A tragic day in the Ardennes

 By Allan C BARGER, Company D, 505th PIR, 82nd A/B Div.

 

This page is taken from the first edition of the book "WAR & PEOPLE" published in the United States of America by the veteran  Allan C. BARGER who gave me his written permission to use the poem page 115-117 (Chapter 15: Belgium Bulge) to pay tribute to the eight men who tragically lost their lives on Christmas Day 1944 above the little town of Trois-Ponts, Belgium. 

 

Christmas day started as a beautiful day but it will always remain in my mind as the worst Christmas experience I ever had:

CHRISTMAS PRESENT 1944.

                            Above the town of Trois-Ponts we sat

                            On the first sunny day in a week.

                            It was Christmas day in the Ardennes

                            Up to now, things had been pretty bleak.

 

                            I rose slowly from my ice-rimmed bed.

                            And I returned my boots to my feet.

                            Men were stirring this side of the hedge

                            On the other, tombstones were replete.

 

                            The hedge had been our shield of defense.

                            I had dug my slit trench at its base.

                            The enemy crept beyond the town.

                            And the Captain showed his smiling face.

 

                            "Good morning," he said. "Have a cigar."

                            "No," I said: "It's too early for me."

                            I thought of saying: Merry Christmas.

                            "A beautiful day, Barger," said he.

 

                            I went over to the nearby spring,

                            But first I had to break off the ice.

                            I thought I would make some hot coffe.

                            I was sure that would be pretty nice.

 

                            We sat around, smoked, drank and we ate.

                            It was good to feel the wintry sun.

                            It seemed things were unusually quiet.

                            Life at the front is never much fun.

 

                            Then out of the sky came our own planes.

                            The P47's flew in so swift,

                            Four strafed the enemy way below.

                            Each giving a five hundred pound gift.

 

                            The last plane mistook some of our men

                            For en'my on our side of the hill.

                            He dropped his bombs directly on them,

                            What was left was practically nil.

 

                            But these men were one of our own squads

                            They were fixing their Christmas Day meal.

                            Eight of them were killed in a flash!

                            An event we will never conceal.

 

                            These were our good buddies in their prime

                            And every Christmas since that day

                            I cannot but remember that time

                            And I think of the pride they did pay.

 

I've dedicated this poem to these eight men:                  

 

                            Kenneth R. CRAIG

                            Edwin G. DAVIS

                            Thomas H. EVANS

                            John L. GRANT

                            Leland C. HELLER

                            Donald H. OLDS

                            Harold V. SCHRAMM

                            Bernard J. SCHROEDER

 

                            All killed in action, December 25, 1944

 

                                                                             By Allan C. BARGER, Port Orchard, WA

 

bar1027d.jpg (1541 octets)

backhomepage.jpg (3192 octets)    back82page.jpg (3129 octets)    usunitbutton.jpg (3003 octets)

honorollbutton.jpg (2904 octets)       

bar1027d.jpg (1541 octets)

Created : August 15, 2005

Updated : August 15, 2005

Copyright © 2001-2002-2003-2004-2005 Allan C. BARGER & Eddy LAMBERTY

Please send your comments, WWII accounts, WWII pictures to:

Eddy LAMBERTY -  Rue de Farnières 14

6698 Grand-Halleux

Belgium

Or:

email018.gif (5229 octets) lamberty2@swing.be

barusline.gif (653 octets)