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Marnach garrison out of the way, but an hour later Company B radioed that three hundred Germans were northwest and southwest of Marnach. The 1st Battalion commander had already ordered Company A, located three miles farther north on the Skyline Drive at Heinerscheid, to send a patrol south and make contact with Company B. In midmorning Paul ordered Company C to march north from Munshausen, leaving the cannon company there, and counterattack the Germans in the Company B area.


By this time, however, the advance infantry detachments of the 2d Panzer Division were not only involved in a battle to knock out Marnach but were pushing past the village en route to Clerf. The 24-man patrol from Company A ran into the German flank at Fishbach, about 1120, and had to withdraw under intense fire. Two hours later the enemy struck at Company A, apparently an attempt to clear the north-south Skyline Drive, but artillery fire beat him off. In the meantime the Company C advance north toward Marnach also ran into trouble: persistent small arms fire forced the infantry to leave the road and move slowly across country. Tanks, ordered up from the division reserve, had not yet arrived. In Marnach the hard-beset garrison fought on, now under the command of the battalion executive officer, Capt. J. H. Burns, who had taken over when the company commander was wounded.


Back to the west, in the 28th Division command post at Wiltz, General Cota took what steps he could to help the 110th Infantry. The bulk of his very limited reserve consisted of the 2d Battalion, 110th Infantry, and the 707th Tank Battalion. By the middle of the morning it was apparent that the VIII Corps was under attack all along the front and that the 28th Division would have to make out with what it had. Radio communication, which was functioning fairly well, showed that the division center was most endangered. About 1000, therefore, General Cota ordered Companies A and B of the 707th Tank Battalion to reinforce the 110th Infantry, with the intention of clearing up the deepest enemy penetrations and sweeping the ridge road clear. Although Fuller pled for the return of the 2d Battalion to his regiment, Cota refused to release this last division reserve.


Shortly before noon a platoon of Company B's tanks reached the hardpressed field artillery battery near Buchholz and reported the situation in hand. [8] But the enemy here represented only the probing forefinger of the main attack. Company B moved east to aid the 3d Battalion, and Company A, less a platoon in mobile reserve at Clerf, moved to the northern sector. At nearly every point the American tanks would have to fight their way down the roads to reach the infantry holding the villages. To the east, at Dasburg, the German engineers were straining to finish the tank bridge which would bring the German armor into play. Time was running out for the American companies: ammunition


[8] An M16 half-track from the 44th Antiaircraft Artillery (Automatic Weapons) Battalion was responsible for the fact that this battery was still in position. Early that morning a German company had marched up to a crossroads where the half-track was standing, apparently intending to deploy for an attack against the battery. Seeing the vehicle, the enemy column paused. One of the crew thought fast and waved the Germans forward in friendly fashion. When the .50-caliber machine guns on the half-tracks ceased fire nearly one hundred German dead were counted.