Welcome to MtMestas.com
MtMestas.com is an archive of Documents, Pictures and Stories about the 88th Infantry Division Blue Devils, the Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument, PFC Felix B. Mestas, Jr. and the Invasion of Italy phase of World War II between 1943-45. Our focus is towards preserving Family and Historical knowledge.
MtMestas.com is an archive of Documents, Pictures and Stories about the 88th Infantry Division Blue Devils,
the Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument, PFC Felix B. Mestas, Jr., and the Invasion of Italy and Trieste (TRUST)
periods of World War II between 1942-1954. Our focus is towards preserving Family and Historical knowledge
.
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88th Infantry Division Blue Devils

88th Infantry
Division


Blue Devils

1942 - 1945
88th Infantry Division
Blue Devils
World War II Research Website
88th Infantry Division Trust Period 1947-1954

88th Infantry
Dsivision

Trust Period

1947-1954
349th Infantry "Kraut Killers" Regiment - 88th Infantry Division
349th Infantry
"Kraut Killers"
Regiment
350th Infantry "Battle Mountain" Regiment - 88th Infantry Division
350th Infantry
"Battle Mountain"
Regiment
351st Infantry "Spear Head" Regiment - 88th Infantry Division
351st Infantry
"Spear Head"
Regiment

313th Combat Engineers Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
313th
Combat
Engineers
Battalion
313th Medical Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
313th
Medical
Battalion
337th Field Artillery Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
337th
Field
Artillery
Battalion
338th Field Artillery Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
338th
Field
Artillery
Battalion
339th Field Artillery Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
339th
Field
Artillery
Battalion
913th Field Artillery Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
913th
Field
Artillery
Battalion
88th Infantry Division Band
88th
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88th Infantry Division Band
88th
Infantry
Division
Military Police Company
88th Infantry Division Band
88th
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Quartermaster Company
88th Infantry Division Band
88th
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Division
Recon Troop (Mech)
88th Infantry Division Band
88th
Infantry
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Signal Company
88th Infantry Division Band
788th
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FLASH INTRO -Turn on your sound. When it starts hit the F11 key on/off for full screen.
88TH
INFANTRY
DIVISION
88th Band
88th Mil. Police Co.
88th Q'master Co.
88th Recon. Troop Co.
88th Signal Co.
337th Field Art'y Bn.
339th Field Art'y Bn.
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313th Combat Eng.
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788th Ordnance Co.
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ASSIGNED
TO THE 88TH
442nd Infantry Reg.
752nd Tank Reg.
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INFANTRY
DIVISION
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AFRICA
1942
1943
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Apennines
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(Monte Battaglia)
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1944 Combat Film
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Silver Star

PFC Felix Belois Mestas, Jr.

Company G
350th Infantry Regiment
88th Infantry Division
Blue Devils

Died in Battle
September 29, 1944
Monte Battaglia, Italy

PFC Felix Belois Mestas, Jr.  350th Infantry Regiment CO G 88th Infantry Division Blue Devils Died in Battle on September 29, 1944 at Monte Battaglia, Italy
Aug. 23, 1921
Sep. 29, 1944

PFC Felix B. Mestas, Jr.

The Unknown Hero
of Battle Mountain
"September, 1944. The Appenine mountains in Italy were misted with the first of winter's chill as members of Company G of the 350th Infantry struggled up the muddy slopes of Mount Battaglia.

Company G was about to face its bloodiest confrontation of World War II. There would be only three survivors and they would live because of one soldier's sacrafice.
"


Source:Mt.Mestas - The Hero Behind The Mountain

Private First Class Felix B. Mestas, Jr. died a hero's death on an Italian battlefront in one of the bloodiest battles of World War II on 29 September 1944, just a month after his 23rd birthday.

His bravery that day was reported but for a time his identity remained a mystery, lending him the title of "The Unknown Hero of Battle Mountain". Soon after, the complete story came out.

The Battle
Mountain Regiment
The 350th Infantry Regiment
Distinguished Unit Citation
The 350th Infantry Regiment was awarded the Distinguished Unit Citation for Monte Battaglia and took the nickname "The Battle Mountain Regiment". Read Citation

Medal
of Honor

There were only 442 Medal of Honor citations in all of WW2.

265 of them were awarded to U.S. Army persons. Two were awarded to men of the 88th.

On June 21, 2000, 22 World War II Asian American veterans and others of Asian descent were awarded the Medal of Honor for a total 464 WW2 medals.


Captain Robert E. Roeder  Medal of Honor recepient - 350th Infantry Regiment 88th Infantry Division Blue Devils
Captain
Robert E. Roeder
Company G
350th Infantry Regiment

PFC Mestas' company commander, Capt. Roeder, received a Medal of Honor for his actions at Monte Battaglia 27-28 Sep. 1944.

Second Lieutenant Charles W. Shea - Company  F 350th Infantry Regiment - 88th Infantry Division Blue Devils
Second Lieutenant
Charles W. Shea
Company F
350th Infantry Regiment

Second Lieutenant Charles W. Shea received a Medal of Honor for his actions near Mount Damiano, Italy, 12 May 1944.

PFC Felix B. Mestas, Jr. was postumously awarded the Silver Star Medal.
Private First Class
Felix B. Mestas
Company G
350th Infantry Regiment

PFC Mestas was investigated for a Medal of Honor citation. Some think that possibly he didn't receive one because of his Hispanic heritage. He was postumously awarded the Silver Star Medal.

Read "Silver Star or Medal of Honor?" Col. Edwin Todd Wheatley, Jr.'s, story about advocating for a Mestas Medal of Honor upgrade.

Mt.Mestas

Mt. Baldy, a nearby mountain that had been Junior's favorite place for all his life, was renamed Mt.Mestas in his honor.

The Mt.Mestas
Memorial Monument

The Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument was erected at a highway turn-out atop the mountain's La Veta Pass highway. Made of Colorado rose granite taken from the mountain itself, it was engraved with the names of 63 men of Huerfano County who died in World War II.

88th Division
Route Map Poster
of World War II


This 88th Infantry Division World War 2 Route Map poster was sold by the 88th Infantry Division Association at their 50th Anniversary reunion in 1992. Only 1700 copies were printed. This rare poster has only appeared on Ebay once in the last 7 years and it sold for $90.

More >

The 88th
Infantry Division
In Words and Pictures


The Invasion of Italy is one of the least documented areas of the War.

We are trying to recreate the 15,000 man roster of the 88th Infantry Division through pictures for a Pictures and Bios CD. We're looking for any bios, stories or World War II photos of the 88th Infantry Division in the U.S. or any photos of the 88th in the USA, Africa or Italy during World War II or from the Triest Occupation period 1945-47. If you would like to contribute please email us at Hello@MtMestas.com.
Pfc. Felix B. Mestas, Jr., was the 'Unknown Hero of Battle Mountain'.

The 88th Infantry Division
"Blue Devils
"

The 88th Infantry Division was the first organized Reserve Division to go overseas, and also the first to enter combat. During the time it was in combat, from March 4 1944 to May 2 1945, the Blue Devils suffered over four thousand battle casualties, of whom twelve hundred were killed in action.

Statistics

Activated:
15 July 1942
Overseas:
6 Dec 1943

Campaigns
Rome-Arno
North Apennines
Po Valley

Days of combat:
317
Killed in Action:
2,137
Wounded in Action:
8,248
Missing in Action:
521
Captured
379
Total Casualties
11,258

Awards
Medal of Honor:
2
Distinguished
Service Cross:
40
Distinguished
Service Medal:
2
Silver Star:
522
Legion of Merit:
66
Soldier's Medal:
19
Bronze Star Medal:
3,784
Combat
Infantryman's
Badge:

Commanders
88th Infantry Division
1942 - 1945
Blue Devils-88th Infantry Division-Major General John E.Sloan-Commanding General-July 1942-September 1944
Major General
John E. Sloan
Commanding
General
Jul 42 - Sep 44
Blue Devils-88th Infantry Division-Major General Paul W. Kendall-Commanding General-September 1944-July 1945
Major General
Paul W. Kendall
Commanding
General
Sep 44 - Jul 45
Blue Devils-88th Infantry Division-Brigadier General James C. Fry-Commanding General-July 1945
Brigadier General
James C. Fry
Commanding
General
Jul 45
Blue Devils-88th Infantry Division-Major General Bryant E. Moore-Commanding General-November 1945
Major General
Bryant E. Moore
Commanding
General
Nov 45


Regiments cited for outstanding
performance of duty in action.

Laiatico, Italy
9 - 13 July 1944
3rd Battalion
351st Infantry Regiment

The 3rd Battalion, 351st Infantry Regiment, is cited for outstanding performance of duty in action during the period 9 to 13 Jnly 1944 in the vicinity of Laiatico, Italy.




Monte Battaglia, Italy
27 Sep - 3 Oct 1944
2nd Battalion
350th Infantry Regiment

The 2nd Battalion, 350th Infantry Regiment is cited for outstanding performance of duty in action during the period 27 September to 3 October 1944 at Mt. Battaglia, Italy.

Monte Battaglia, Italy


Monte Capello, Italy
27 Sep - 1 Oct 1944
2nd Battalion
351st Infantry Regiment

The 2nd Battalion, 351st Infantry Regiment is cited for outstanding performance of duty in action during the period 27 September to 1 October 1944, near Mt.Capello,
Itlay.




Monte Battaglia

Shall e'er forgotten be Battaglia's
height, "Gainst which the trait'rous Hun cast all his might? Where many a noble Yank now sleeps at rest, with Coldstream too, upon that castled crest.

Shall be forgot the Valmaggiore Trail, that path of sticky mud and glutinous shine. Winding its treacherous way o'er hill and vale, shall we forget it ever in our time?

Full many a tiring mile we toiled and fell. But ever up and onward to this hill for hill it was when Jerry let things fly and many a cherished son marched there - to die.

Many a Hun attack was launched in vain and on the ground was left his bloody stain. For Coldstream Guards, the Scots and Welsh Guards, too, defended to the death - and saw it through.

Noble and proud the Castle stood on high; That undefeated Watchtower, 'gainst the sky. Stern by day, but somehow changed at night, "Twas almost human in the waning light.

Could it but speak, a wondrous tale 'twould tell, how on Battaglia's slopes men fought and fell. In grim defence against th'attacking Hun, and many a grave was there when it was done.

American, Coldstream, Welsh - aye, German, too, lie scattered round the Castle, 'neath the blue. And in our memories the Guards still keep, the Castle, and Battaglia's massive steep.

S.B. Hill - Italy - 20 April 1945
HOME - 88th - 349th - 350th - 351st - 88th Support Units - Units Assigned to 88th - 88th Info - Africa - Allies - Audio - Battles - Books - Chronologies - Citations - Generals - Germany - Italy - Links - Maps - Medals - Multimedia - Museum - Operations - Pictures - Research Resources - Sicily - Video
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MtMestas.com
88th Infantry Division
Blue Devils
Research Library

MtMestas.com is dedicated to establishing an extensive research library of
Documents, Photographs and Resources for continuing your research of the Invasion
of 88th Infantry Division and the Invasion of Italy phase of World War 2.

Silver Star or Medal of Honor ?
Silver Star Revisited

by (Ret.) Col. Todd Wheatley

Col. Edwin Todd Wheatley, Jr., was a bootcamp bunkmate of Pvt. Felix B. Mestas, Jr. and spent his later years advocating for a Medal of Honor upgrade for his friend.

Mr. Wheatley authored the article "Silver Star or Medal of Honor?"
about this work, which was published in a national medal collectors magazine he was associated with in June 2003.

MtMestas.com would like to pay it's respects and dedicate the Blue Devils Research Library in his memory.



Col. Edwin Todd Wheatley, Jr.
7 Jul 1924 - 29 May 2004

Read: Todd Wheatley bio

Read:

-
"Silver Star or Medal of Honor?"
-
Todd Wheatley bio
Todd Wheatley was well respected amoung his friends and several have expressed how much he cared about Felix B. Mestas, Jr.

I've been told that he would have been happy to give his permission for the reprinting of his article, and especially because it is being reprinted on a website of a relative of PFC Mestas.

MtMestas.com expresses gratitude to Todd's friend Tom E. Kullgren for providing the magazine and bios and to Dick Flory, JOMSA Editor for permissiom to reproduce the Wheatley article here on the website.

Thank you.

 

HOME - 88th - 349th - 350th - 351st - 88th Support Units - Units Assigned to 88th - 88th Info - Africa - Allies - Audio - Battles - Books - Chronologies - Citations - Generals - Germany - Italy - Links - Maps - Medals - Multimedia - Museum - Operations - Pictures - Research Resources - Sicily - Video
Mestas Magazines - Mestas Newspapers - Mt.Mestas - Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument


1942
 
15 Jul -
Activated at Camp Gruber, Oklahoma under the command of Major General John E. Sloan.
1943  
Jun-
The 88th participated in Third Army Louisiana Maneuvers #3.
Aug-
The division moved to Fort Sam Houston, Texas.
Nov-
The division stages at Camp Patrick Henry, Virginia.
15 Dec-
The 88th arrivived at Casablanca, French Morocco from the Hampton Roads Port of Embarcation.
26 Dec-
An advance party of the 88th echelon departed for Italy.
28 Dec-
The Division moved to Magenta, Algeria and conducted intensive training for employment in Italy.
1944  
4 Jan-
The division went into the line as observers attached to 3rd, 34th, and 36th Infantry Divisions, and the British 5th, 46th, and 56th Divisions.
3 Jan-
A member of this advance echelon became the 88thís first KIA when Sergeant William A. Streuli of Paterson, New Jersey (a forward observer in B/339th Field Artillery Battalion) was killed by fragments from a bomb dropped by a Luftwaffe aircraft in the 34th Infantry Division sector. Lieutenant Elwin Ricketts, Battery B Executive Officer, became the first WIA when he was wounded in the same attack.
6 Feb-
The main body of the 88th was transported to Italy in early February and concentrated around Piedimonte d'Alife for combat training.
27 Feb-
The first 88th Division unit into the line was 2nd Battalion, 351st Infantry, which relieved elements of the Texas Divisionís 141st Infantry Regiment near Cervaro.
28 Feb-
The first artillery round fired in combat by an 88th DIVARTY unit was sent downrange by Battery C, 913th Field Artillery Battalion. It's target was a registration point at the Monte Cassino Abbey, the rubble of which was occupied by the Germans after the Allies bombed it.
4 Mar-
The entire Division moved into the line at 1000 hours.
5 Mar-
The division assumed responsibility for the sector previously occupied by the British 5th Division. At the same time, the 88th came under the control of the British X Corps, and deployed its three infantry regiments on line from the Mediterranean into the foothills to the east. Opposing the 88th in the strong fortified positions of the Gustav Line, were the German 71st and 94th Infantry Divisions. The Blue Devil infantry spent the next two months occupying and improving defensive positions and patrolling, while DIVARTY fired harassing and interdiction missions at German positions and suspected and known lines of communication.
11 May-
At 2300 the Allied front in Italy began their last attack on the Gustav Line with the the 88th. In less than an hour, the 350th Infantry Regiment captured Mt. Damiano, key terrain overlooking the flank of the French units attacking on the Divisionís right.
12 May-
In that action, Staff Sergeant Charles W. Shea of F/350th took charge of his platoon after the platoon leader was killed and the platoon sergeant was wounded, and led an assault which knocked the defenders out of their well-prepared positions. For his actions that day, Staff Sergeant Shea became the first Blue Devil to earn the Medal of Honor.
11-14 May-
The rest of the Division also pushed hard and forced the stubborn foe off the Gustav Line. The 351st Infantry stormed into Santa Maria Infante and engaged in a particularly bitter battle with the German defenders there. After more than two days of vicious combat, the 351st seized Santa Maria.
11 May-
The 88th drove north to take Spigno, Mount Civita, Itri, Fondi, and Roccagorga. As the 349th Infantry Regiment passed through the 351st and continued the attack to the north, the 88thís operations took on aspects of a pursuit. Through towns like Itri, Fondi, and Roccgorga, the Blue Devils drove on toward Rome, effectively destroying the German 94th Infantry Division in the process. So badly battered was the 94th that it had to be withdrawn to Germany for reconstitution, and did not return to combat until October.
29 May-
Elements of the 88th made contact with Allied units breaking out of the Anzio beachhead, reached Anzio on 29 May, and pursued the enemy into Rome.
4 Jun-
Elements of the 88th were the first to enter the Rome. After the fall of Rome, the 88th was pulled out of the line to refit and prepare for subsequent operations.
11 Jun-
After continuing across the Tiber to Bassanelio the 88th retired for rest and training.
5 Jul-
The Division went into defensive positions near Pomerance and relieved the 1st Armored Division in the vicinity.
8 Jul-
The Division attacked Volterra at 0500 with the 349th and 350th Infantry Regiments abreast, with the 351st in reserve. Intending to envelop the objective from both sides, the attack successfully drove the defenders of the veteran 90th Panzer Grenadier Division from their choice terrain. Volterra was secure by 2200 hours.
9 Jul-
While performing security duties on the Divisionís left flank, the 351st Infantry Regiment unexpectedly ran into a hornetís nest near Laiatico on 9 July. Here, the regiment encountered Grenadier Regiment 1060, an element of the recently-disbanded 92nd Infantry Division now attached to the 362nd Infantry Division, as well as other elements of the 90th Panzer Grenadiers.
12 Jul-
The 351st Regiment attacked again on the 12th with the 2nd and 3rd Battalions up and the 1st in reserve. The 3rd Battalion tore into the 1060thís 1st Battalion, destroying it and killing the enemy battalion commander.
13 Jul-
All regimental objectives were secure; for its part in the attack, the 3rd Battalion, 351st Infantry Regiment was later awarded the Distinguished Unit Citation.
13 Jul-
Villamagna fell.
20 Jul-
The Arno River was crossed.
25 Jul-
By 25 July, the Fifth Armyís offensive power had been spent; the loss of VI Corps and its veteran 3rd, 36th, and 45th Infantry Divisions to the impending invasion of Southern France prevented it from continuing the drive further to the north. The removal of the French Expeditionary Corps for participation in the same operation also diminished Allied combat power in Italy. Above the Arno, the units of the Germansí Army Group Southwest were finishing their preparations for defense of the Gothic Line, and the Allied forces of the US Fifth and British Eighth Armies were going to require every ounce of power they could muster to breach the heavily fortified line in the mountains that ran from the Ligurian coast in the east to the Adriatic in the west.
Aug-
Major General Sloan was transferred first to a hospital in Italy, then to the States for treatment of a recurring disease. General Sloan was succeeded by the Divisionís Assistant Commander, Brigadier General Paul W. Kendall.
10 Sep-
Allied forces in Italy attacked toward the Gothic Line and penetrated it in the central and Adriatic sectors.
21 Sep-
After a period of rest and training, the Division opened its assault on the Gothic Line and advanced rapidly along the Firenzuola-Imola road, taking Mount Battaglianear near Casola Valsenio on the 28th.
27 Sep-
The 2nd Battalion - 351st Infantry Regiment earns the Distinguished Unit Citation for Monte Cappello. The fighting raged for days, sometimes literally at bayonet point,until the 1st and 2nd Battalions secured the top of the mountain.
27-28 Sep-
Captain Robert Roeder, CO of Company G, was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions at Monte Battaglia.
27 Sep-
The 2nd Battalion - 350th Infantry Regiment earns the Distinguished Unit Citation for Monte Battaglia.
30 Sep-
The 349th Infantry Regiment attack the village of Belvedere enroute to its objective, Mt. Grande.
20-22 Oct-

The enemy counterattacked savagely and heavy fighting continued on the line toward the Po Valley. The strategic positions of Mount Grande and Farnetto were taken on 20 and 22 October.

24 Oct-
Company G, 351st came closest to breaking through, but was literally wiped out at Vedriano, southeast of Bologna, on 24 October.
26 Oct-

The 88th went over to the defensive in late October patrolling in the Mount Grande-Mount Cerrere sector and the Mount Fano improved positions, and rehabilitated its combat troops.

22 Nov-
The Division relieved the 85th Infantry Division in its sector.
1945  
13 Jan-
The Division was relieved for general rehabilitation.
24 Jan-

The division was committed in relief of the 91st Infantry Division near Loiano and Livergnano and after more patrolling and maintenance of defensive positions, the Division was pulled out of the line again for further rehabilitation and special training for the impending spring offensive to 2 Mar.

1 Apr-

That offensive, which would finally defeat the Wehrmacht in Italy, commenced with a supporting attack by the 92nd Infantry Division on the Ligurian coast in the west to draw German forces away from the point of the impending main effort.

9 Apr-
Another supporting attack, in much greater strength, was launched by the British Eighth Army on the Adriatic coast on 9 April. Finally, with the German reserves being decisively committed to meet these attacks at the extreme ends of the line in Italy, on 14 April, Fifth Army jumped off in the main attack against the German center.
15 Apr-

The 88thís attack began at 2230 hours on 15 April, as its infantry regiments lunged toward Monterumici. In two days the Blue Devils knocked the German defenders off the key ridge.

17 Apr-
Monterumici fell on the 17th after an intense barrage.
24 Apr-

The Po River was crossed as the 88th pursued the enemy toward the Alps.

25 Apr-

Verona fell.

28 Apr-
Vicenza fell.
2 May-

The 88th was driving through the Dolomite Alps toward Innsbruck, Austria to link up with the 103rd Infantry Division, when the hostilities ended on 2 May 1945. German forces in Italy surrendered although it took until early the next day to notify all Blue Devil units of the capitulation.

4 May-
Elements of the 349th Infantry Regiment linked up with units from the 103rd Infantry Divisionís 409th Infantry Regiment coming down from Austria where German forces had yet to surrender in the Brenner Pass.
7 Jun-

The 88th Division assumed POW Command duties to repatriate a minimum of 100,000 Germans and to form an estimated 120,000 of them into service units. POW strength figures at the time indicated that the 88th Division had approximately 295,000 Germans available to accomplish this dual mission. Later figures raised this total above 320,000 as Germans came in out of the hills, unguarded German service units were discovered and taken over, and responsibility for the Czech PWs was transferred from the Fifth Army to the Division.

1947 to 1954

The 88th in Occupation and the Free Territory of Trieste Trust Period.

TRUST stands for Trieste United States Troops, the 5,000 man U.S. contingent based in the Free Terrority of Trieste created in 1947. The Free State was established in 1947 in order to accomodate an ethnically and culturally mixed population in a neutral country between Italy and Yugoslavia.

After the war, the 88th Infantry Division on occupation duty in Italy guarded the Morgan Line from positions in Italy and Trieste until 15 September 1947. It was then withdrawn to Livorno and inactivated. The 351st Infantry was relieved from assignment to the division on 1 May 1947 and served as the main component of a garrison command in the Free Territory of Trieste, securing the disputed border between Italy and Yugoslavia.

The command served as the front line in the Cold War from 1947 to 1954, including confrontations with Yugoslavian forces. In October 1954 the territory was ceded to Italy and administration turned over to the Italian Army.

TRUST units, which included a number of 88th divisional support units, all bore a unit patch which was the coat of arms of the Free Territory of Trieste superimposed over the divisional quarterfoil, over which was a blue scroll containing the designation "TRUST" in white."

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Mestas Magazines - Mestas Newspapers - Mt.Mestas - Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument

Trieste, Italy
1945-47


The Beginning of the Cold War

On 31 May, 1945 the 88th gave Bolanzo over to the Allied Italian troops, but since tensions were so high between the Italians and the Germans, the 349th Infantry stayed to prevent trouble.

The rest of the division was sent to Lake Garda, where they were given the assignment of guarding 300,000 POWs. Some of the soldiers had enough points to ship out during the summer, while others were moved to Trieste for occupation in the fall. Many of them remained in Italy for the next two years.

The city of Trieste in the northern Adriatic was the center of long-standing Italo-Yugoslav territorial struggle at the end of World War II. The United States assumed a key role in this dispute by joining Britain in taking on temporary military administration of the city to prevent its occupation by Tito's Yugoslavia until a settlement could be reached at the peace table. This "temporary" Anglo-American control of Trieste lasted nearly a decade, until the sovereignty question was finally resolved in 1954 in favor of Italy.

The 88th Infantry Division was fighting in the Dolomite Alps of Austria when the war ended in May of 1945.

After the war the Division, on occupation duty in Italy, guarded the Morgan Line from positions in Italy and Trieste until 15 September 1947. It was then withdrawn to Livorno and inactivated.

The 351st Infantry was relieved from assignment to the division on 1 May 1947 and served as the main component of a garrison command in the Free Territory of Trieste, securing the disputed border between Italy and Yugoslavia.

The command served as the front line in the Cold War from 1947 to 1954, including confrontations with Yugoslavian forces. In October 1954 the territory was ceded to Italy and administration turned over to the Italian Army.

In 1947, Trieste was declared an independent city state under the protection of the United Nations as the Free Territory of Trieste. The territory was divided into two zones, A and B, along the Morgan Line, established in 1945.

From 1947 to 1954, the A Zone was governed by the Allied Military Government, composed of the American "Trieste United States Troops" (TRUST), commanded by Major General Bryant E. Moore, the commanding general of the American 88th Infantry Division, and the "British Element Trieste Forces" (BETFOR), commanded by Sir Terence Airey, who were the joint forces commander and also the military governors. Zone A covered almost the same area of the current Italian Province of Trieste, except for four small villages south of Muggia, which were given to Yugoslavia after the dissolution of the Free Territory in 1954. Zone B, which remained under the military administration of the Yugoslav People's Army, was composed of the north-westernmost portion of the Istrian peninsula, between the river Mirna and the Debeli Rtic cape.





In 1954, the Free Territory of Trieste was dissolved. The vast majority of Zone A, including the city of Trieste, was ceded to Italy. Zone B became part of Yugoslavia, along with four villages from the Zone A (Plavje, Spodnje Škofije, Hrvatini, and Jelarji), and was divided among the Socialist Republic of Slovenia and Croatia. The annexation of Trieste to Italy was officially announced on 26 October 1954, and was welcomed by the majority of the Trieste population.

The final border line with Yugoslavia, and the status of the ethnic minorities in the areas, was settled in 1975 with the Treaty of Osimo. This line is now the border between Italy and Slovenia.

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349th Infantry
"Kraut Killers"
Regiment


History
Constituted in the National Army 5 August 1917 as the 349th Infantry Regiment, assigned to the 88th Division. Organized 30 August 1917 at Camp Dodge, Iowa. Demobilized 12 June 1919 at Camp Dodge. (88th Division demobilized 10 June 1919, relieving components from assignment; reorganized in 1921 in the Organized Reserves.) Reconstituted, allotted to the Organized Reserves, assigned to the 88th Division, VII Corps Area, 24 June 1921, and organized in October 1921. Ordered into active military service, less personnel, and organized 15 July 1942 at Camp Gruber, Oklahoma, as an element of the 88th Infantry Division. Inactivated 22 September-7 October 1947 in the vicinity of Livorno, Italy. Organized Reserves redesignated Organized Reserve Corps in March 1948; redesignated Army Reserve in 1952.
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350th Infantry
"Battle Mountain"
Regiment

History
Constituted in the National Army 5 August 1917 as the 350th Infantry Regiment, assigned to the 88th Division. Organized 27 August 1917 at Camp Dodge, Iowa. Demobilized 5-8 June 1919 at Camp Dodge. (88th Division demobilized 10 June 1919, relieving components from assignment; reorganized in 1921 in the Organized Reserves.) Reconstituted, allotted to the Organized Reserves, assigned to the 88th Division, VII Corps Area, 24 June 1921, and organized in October 1921. Ordered into active military service, less personnel, and organized 15 July 1942 at Camp Gruber, Oklahoma, as an element of the 88th Infantry Division. Inactivated 23 September-16 October 1947 at Livorno, Italy. Relieved from assignment to the 88th Infantry Division on 28 May 1948. Activated 15 June 1948 in Austria. Withdrawn from allotment to the Reserves and allotted to the Regular Army 1 December 1951.
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351st Infantry
"Spearhead"
Regiment

History
Constituted in the National Army 5 August 1917 as the 351st Infantry Regiment, assigned to the 88th Division. Organized 30 August 1917 at Camp Dodge, Iowa. Demobilized 7 June 1919 at Camp Dodge. (88th Division demobilized 10 June 1919, relieving components from assignment; reorganized in 1921 in the Organized Reserves.) Reconstituted, allotted to the Organized Reserves, assigned to the 88th Division, VII Corps Area, 24 June 1921, and organized in October 1921. Ordered into active military service, less personnel, and organized 15 July 1942 at Camp Gruber, Oklahoma, as an element of the 88th Infantry Division. Relieved of assignment to the 88th Infantry Division 1 May 1947. Withdrawn from the Reserves and allotted to the Regular Army in 1951.
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88th Infantry Division
Blue Devils
Support Units


88th
Band

88th
Military Police Company

88th
Quartermaster Company

88th
Recon Troop
(Mech)

88th
Signal Company
313th Combat Engineers Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
313th
Combat Engineers Battalion
313th Medical Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
313th
Medical
Battalion
337th Field Artillery Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
337th
Field Artillery Battalion
105mm
338th Field Artillery Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
338th
Field Artillery Battalion
105mm
339th Field Artillery Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
339th
Field Artillery Battalion
155mm

788th
Ordnance Company
913th Field Artillery Battalion - 88th Infantry Division
913th
Field Artillery Battalion
105mm
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MESTAS
NEWSPAPER ARTICLES


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MAGAZINE ARTICLES



The Story of
Cowboy Mestas


Magazine Article


Silver Star or
Medal of Honor?


By Col. Edwin
Todd Wheatley, Jr.


10 Pages

 

 

 

 

 

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Pictures

Mestas
88th
Italy
Mt.Mestas
349th
North Africa
Mt.Mestas
Memorial Monument
350th
Other Units
88th
Monuments
351st
People
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Mestas Magazines - Mestas Newspapers - Mt.Mestas - Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument
88th Infantry Division
Route Map Poster of World War 2

This 88th Infantry Division World War 2 route map poster was sold by the 88th Infantry Division Association at their 50th Anniversary reunion in 1992. Only 1700 copies were printed. This rare poster has only appeared once on Ebay in the last 10 years and sold for $90.

The poster shows historical information depicting the route of the 88th Infantry Division and the 349th, 350th and 351st Infantry Regiments through Italy from September 1943 to May 1945.

The original artist, Mr. John Smith, Sr., was in the 349th Infantry Regiment and by special arrangement with Mr. Smith, this poster is available again, printed on poster media in half size at 11"x17" from the original artwork and shipped in a rolled poster tube with artist bio included. Ask for details.
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Mestas Magazines - Mestas Newspapers - Mt.Mestas - Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument

Books On This Website




337th
Field Artillary

History of the
337th Field Artillary
Read: 00 Pages


338th
Field Artillary

Direct Support
A Story of
Fighting Men

94 Pages


350th
Infantry Regiment

Battle Mountain
Regiment In
Occupation (TRUST)

69 Pages


88th
Infantry Division

We Were There
From Gruber
To Brenner Pass

98 Pages


10 Sep 44 - 4 Apr 45

North Apennines

Read: 00 Pages


22 Jan - 9 Sep 44

Rome - Arno

Read: 00 Pages


9 Sep 43 - 21 Jan 44

Naples - Foggia

Read: 00 Pages


5 Apr - 8 May 45

Po Valley

Read: 00 Pages


Road to Rome

Read: 00 Pages


19 Days
From the Apennines
to the Alps

Read: 00 Pages


Finito !

Read: 00 Pages


The Final Campaign

Read: 00 Pages
Books to Buy


349th
Infantry Regiment

Long Walk
Through War
( Klaus Huebner)


350th
Infantry Regiment

Combat Soldier
( James C. Fry)


350th
Infantry Regiment

The Blue Devils
Battle Mountain
Regiment in Italy
(John E. Wallace)


88th
Infantry Division

Draftee Division
( John Sloan Brown)


The Blue Devils
in Italy
by
John P. Delaney

88th
Infantry Division

Calculated Risk

by
Mark Clark
5th Army General

From the Danube
to the Yalu

by
Mark Clark
5th Army General



1992
50th Anniversary
Reunion Book

88th
Infantry Division
Association


Blue Devils

by
Valerio Calderoni
and Renzo Grandi



The War Against
Germany and Italy

Read: 00 Pages

 

 

 

HOME - 88th - 349th - 350th - 351st - 88th Support Units - Units Assigned to 88th - 88th Info - Africa - Allies - Audio - Battles - Books - Chronologies - Citations - Generals - Germany - Italy - Links - Maps - Medals - Multimedia - Museum - Operations - Pictures - Research Resources - Sicily - Video
Mestas Magazines - Mestas Newspapers - Mt.Mestas - Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument
The Mt.Mestas
Memorial Monument

The Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument was erected of Colorado rose granite from the mountain and engraved with the names of 63 men of Huerfano County who died in World War II. Every Memorial Day and Veterans Day since, people have gathered at the mountain monument to pay tribute to all of La Veta and Walsenburg's fallen war heros.

Where and how these men died is all but forgotten. If you know any of the names or family of the men listed on the Monument or stories or old pictures of the Monument please contact us.

- Click here for the Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument page.
- Click here for www.MtMestasMemorialMonument.com website.


The Mt.Mestas
Memorial Monument
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Mestas Magazines - Mestas Newspapers - Mt.Mestas - Mt.Mestas Memorial Monument

Researching World War II - Copyright Gary Smith 2011
MtMestas.com - An 88th Infantry Division Blue Devils World War II Research Website

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