division (which had nowhere been broken by the 1st SS Panzer) followed the trace of a wide, lopsided V, reaching from Marvie in the northeast to a point west of Villers-la-Bonne-Eau, then back southeast to Bavigne. Before the 35th could regain its stride, it would be necessary to reduce the opposition that had flared up at three points: Lutrebois, Villersla-Bonne-Eau (where the two companies from the 137th Infantry had been entrapped), and Harlange.
On the left wing the 2d and 3d Battalions of the 134th watched through the morning hours of 31 December while the corps artillery fired TOT's on Lutrebois, then rose from the foxhole line to renew the assault eastward. As the 2d Battalion tried to move out across the valley, it made a perfect target for the small arms fire sweeping in from the opposing wooded crest, took ninety casualties, and fell back. The 3d Battalion made a pass at Lutrebois, but the fire from the woods covering the high ground to the northeast barred entrance to the village.
The entire regiment joined the attack on 1 January. Now it was going up against the 167th Volks Grenadier Division, which finally had entered the line in its entirety (relieving the 1st SS Panzer) and was deployed on the right wing of the LIII Corps opposite Marvie and Lutremange. On the left the 1st Battalion, separated by three thousand yards from the neighboring 3d, set out from Marvie to bring the division flank forward and neutralize the German hold on the ridges overlooking Lutrebois. The veteran 167th, however, quickly sensed the gap in the American line and cut through to the rear of the 1st; nor did the 2d have any better luck at Lutrebois. In the afternoon the 2d Battalion assault had put Companies E and G across the valley and into the woods, when a sharp German riposte struck the two companies, isolating them completely by nightfall. Next morning the two American companies broke loose, and the 3d Battalion again attacked across the open space west of the village to seize a few buildings from which to build up the assault. Finally coming within yards of the first house, Company K was pinned down by a machine gun firing from one of the windows. A platoon leader left his men, climbed to the roof, and tossed down a hand grenade. With this building in hand the American infantry began methodically to clear Lutrebois (a two-day task as it turned out) while corps artillery put more TOT fire on the sections of the village still occupied by the enemy.
East of Marvie the 1st Battalion had to delay its advance in order to dig out the grenadiers who had settled themselves in the woods to the rear. Eventually the battalion started forward and, for the first time, made physical contact with the 6th Armored-after mistakenly starting a fire fight with Britton's armored infantry. By the end of 2 January the left wing of the 35th Division was beginning to inch forward, but the terrain features set for seizure by the III Corps commander-two 510meter hills on a thrust line bearing generally northeast from Lutreboiswould prove to be days away.
The 137th Infantry had hopes on 31 December that its two rifle companies still were in Villers-la-Bonne-Eau, but all attempts at relief were thwarted by the 14th Parachute Regiment, decimated though it was, in the surrounding woods.