Unfortunately, the Division that convoyed to Fort Bragg, North Carolina in mid-January, 1944, was not the same Division that would go overseas later that year. Successive drafts of combat personnel -- overwhelmingly infantrymen -- combed over 3,500 men out of the Division in the spring of 1944, and sent them as replacements to units already in combat. The infantry replacement training centers were simply not able to keep up with the demand as Army infantry units were bloodied in Italy and the southwest Pacific. These highly-trained Centurymen bolstered the blows of the Fifth Army as it slugged its way up the Italian boot, and the Sixth Army, as it fought its way up the coast of New Guinea in the first half of 1944.

The Division arrived at Fort Bragg from Tennessee Maneuvers, cohesive and well-trained.


Unfortunately, not long after the
Division arrived at Bragg, levies of
trained soldiers were "stripped out" as replacements for units already in combat.