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fight for St. Vith and in the subsequent withdrawal. Many records were destroyed during the final retreat, units were put back in the line on the 23d with no accounting of their existing strength, and the formations of the 106th Division and 14th Cavalry Group had taken very severe losses before the defense of St. Vith began. Casualty figures subsequently compiled for the 7th Armored Division, and the 14th Cavalry Group list 3,397 officers and men either killed, wounded, or missing, Statistics on losses suffered by the various artillery, engineer, and tank destroyer units have never been compiled. The 7th Armored Division (by fairly accurate reckoning) had lost 59 medium tanks, 29 light tanks, and 25 armored cars. [8]


The losses sustained by the defenders of St. Vith must be measured against their accomplishments. They had met an entire German corps flushed with easy victory and halted it in its tracks. They had firmly choked one of the main enemy lines of communication and forced days of delay on the westward movement of troops, guns, tanks, and supplies belonging to two German armies. They had given the XVIII Airborne Corps badly needed time to gather for a co-ordinated and effective defense. Finally, these units had carried out a successful withdrawal under the most difficult conditions and would return again to the battle.


[8] Ridgway was told that there were about one hundred usable tanks in the forces which came out of St. Vith. Cf. XXIII below. pp. 582-83.