Welcome to France!

Sam Resnick, Heavy Mortar Platoon, Company D/399th Infantry Regiment recalls this unexpected welcome from a woman who was no lady . . .

"After the long night march from Marseilles, we reached our staging area in some woods, near Fremifontaine in southern France. Prior to our leaving the States, tight security had been imposed. Our uniform patches were removed, letters were censored, identifying marks removed from all vehicles and equipment; nothing remained to indicate what division, regiment, or company we were.

"One evening sitting around in the dark listening to the radio from a staff car parked nearby, since we were still far from the front, we heard our favorite American music and popular songs. It was nice, I thought, getting that from the States or from England. Abruptly, the music ended with the announcement by a sweet-voiced woman, "The men of the 100th Division are welcomed to France and I hope you have a good night's sleep on the outskirts of the village of Fremifontaine because you will need all of your strength tomorrow." We were frightened in those woods, in the darkness. With all of our security measures, with the protection and precautions of the US Army, we had fooled everyone, including ourselves, but not the lady on the radio - Axis Sally.

"We were to hear from her quite often and each time, it demoralized us a bit more, although at times, she did let us know where we were and where we were going and against whom we would be fighting - some solace after all, something to diminish the dreadful, unknowing fear."

-- From "Forgotten Memories of World War II" in the July 2000 issue of the 100th Infantry Division Association News, Volume 44, Number 2.