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The Fighting First: The Untold Story Of The Big Red One on D-Day

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Overview

The Fighting First recounts the untold story of the 1st Infantry Division’s role in the invasion of France at Normandy. Using primary sources, official records, interviews, and unpublished memoirs by the veterans themselves, Flint Whitlock has crafted a riveting, gut-wrenching, personal story of courage under fire. Operation Overlord—the Allied invasion of Normandy on 6 June 1944—was the most important battle of World War II, and Omaha Beach was the hottest spot in the entire operation. Leading the amphibious ...

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The Fighting First: The Untold Story Of The Big Red One on D-Day

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Overview

The Fighting First recounts the untold story of the 1st Infantry Division’s role in the invasion of France at Normandy. Using primary sources, official records, interviews, and unpublished memoirs by the veterans themselves, Flint Whitlock has crafted a riveting, gut-wrenching, personal story of courage under fire. Operation Overlord—the Allied invasion of Normandy on 6 June 1944—was the most important battle of World War II, and Omaha Beach was the hottest spot in the entire operation. Leading the amphibious assault on the “Easy Red” and “Fox Green” sectors of Omaha Beach was the U.S. Army’s 1st Infantry Division—“The Big Red One”—a tough, swaggering outfit with a fine battle record. The saga of the Big Red One, however, did not end with the storming of the beachhead, but continued across France, Belgium, and into Germany itself, where the division fought in the battles for Aachen, the Huertgen Forest, and the Battle of the Bulge. The Fighting First is an inspiring, graphic, and often heart-breaking story of young American soldiers performing their missions with spirit, humor, and determination.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Whitlock (Soldiers on Skis; The Rock of Anzio) has written the first oral history of the 1st Infantry Division of the U.S. Army (a.k.a. the Big Red One). His emphasis is on the division's preparation and actual landing on Normandy's Omaha Beach in 1944. The remainder of the text briefly sketches its work in the subsequent hedgerow wars through France and Germany, as well as the fighting in the Huertgen Forest and at the Battle of the Bulge. Of course, the late Stephen Ambrose set the style for this sort of oral history, and Whitlock follows suit. Whitlock himself writes well; one is able to sense the utter fear of men knowing they may be facing almost instant death-even when the men are battle-hardened veterans of the earlier Italian campaigns. Here is the real story of Private Ryan. Readers wishing more in the way of maps, photography, and pure history can consult Ian Westwell's 1st Infantry Division: Big Red One. Recommended for public libraries. [June 6, 2004, marks the 60th anniversary of the D-Day invasion.-Ed.]-Rich Nowicki, Emerson Vocational H.S. (ret.), Buffalo, NY Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813343174
  • Publisher: Basic Books
  • Publication date: 5/9/2005
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 744,505
  • Product dimensions: 6.08 (w) x 9.16 (h) x 0.98 (d)

Meet the Author

Pulitzer Prize-nominated author Flint Whitlock is a former U.S. Army officer who served on active duty from 1965 to 1970, including a tour in Vietnam. He has been a military historian since 1986 and is the author of Soldiers on Skis, The Rock of Anzio, and The Fighting First. He is a regular contributor to World War II magazine and WW II History magazine. He is the president of the newly formed Colorado Military History Museum, Inc. He lives in Denver, Colorado.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2005

    AMAZING

    this is an absolutely amazing book...it really displays the hard-ships and the succeses...the big red one spearheaded many invasions(such as OMAHAA BEACH), as well as defended some fellow units. must read if you are a history buff or want great and some humorous action stories.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 17, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2012

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