Author gives ‘unbalanced’
The last issue of the Checkerboard announced the publication of another book about our division, “Once Upon a Time in War,” by Robert E. Humphrey. Like many, I bought the book. The effort made to record the experiences of the infantry GIs of our division was impressive. Hundreds of interviews were woven into a narrative of our battles and our living conditions. I am grateful to the author for focusing on the importance of the infantry and its heroism and suffering.
Unfortunately, the author, while giving the frontline troops the praise the deserve, pretty much overlooks the hundreds of others who supported them. When he describes the organization of the division he goes into great detail explaining regiments, battalions, companies, platoons and squads of the infantry portions of the division but totally neglects adding the artillery and other supporting elements. I have no problem giving the infantry most of the glory and honor but as a forward observe I spent enough time with my infantry buddies to know role the role of the artillery was vital to any victory. The author interviewed hundreds of infantrymen but only a half dozen artillerymen.
The book is valuable in saluting the true heroes, the infantrymen, but his account is unbalanced.
Henry B. Dewey C/371
8 Fenimore Road
Worcester MA 01609