July 9-10, 1944

July 9 – ABout 1:30 a.m. one German plane swooped low over our camp and gave us a splash of machine gun fire. No one was hurt, but the Plane itself was brought down shortly afterwards. Sunday today – Church Parade in a few minutes. At 12:30 noon we received word to move. We went out and made a recce, went to RCASC called out three trucks and were ready to move off at 3:40 p.m. We travelled west to Crouilly, then south west on the Bayeux Road, to a spot about one mile north of Esquay sur Seulles. It is now 7:30 p.m. and we are all set up in a lovely orchard, a much nicer harbour than the one we left. We are just now stringing up the light. Went down to “Goldsmith,” a concentration center and met and guided 9th F.D.S.(Field Dressing Station) to their harbour.

July 10 – Went to Camilly and Le Fresne-Camilly this morning – worked all afternoon on loading tables. This evening dropped down to 3 CCS and 9FDS. Expect to move in a few days.

The following July 10 recap is from the website The Battle for Normandy at http://www.ddayoverlord.com

July 10, the Northern part of the town of Caen is finally liberated, more than one month after D-Day, whereas the totality of the city was to be precisely captured in the evening of June 6. This delay of 34 days is the proof of the dead end in which the Anglos-Canadians are. Once the Northern sector of Caen (almost entirely destroyed by the bombardments) captured, the British military forces decides to focus on the key position of hill 112, located 3 kilometers South-west of the capital of the Calvados, Caen. This offensive is part of the Jupiter Operation, which aims at boring the front in the valley of Odon, South-west of Caen, and to cross the Orne river in this sector.

The 8th British Corps launches its offensive on July 10 in direction of the hill 112, and if its progression is supported by the fighter-bombers and by the Allied artillery, the German resistance remains very strong and limits the British movements in this sector. Hill 112 is defended by the soldiers of the 2nd SS Armoured Corps, which are conscious of the strategic importance of this position. Indeed, it defends the accesses of the Southern area of Caen, held by the Panzergroupwest led by Eberbach.

The 43th British Infantry division Wessex moves towards the village of Maltot, 6 kilometers South-west of Caen, and whereas it manages to enter the city, the German defenders of the 9th and 10 SS Panzer Division push back the attackers. By using a heavy fire they isolate some British soldiers in the village: the Allies losses are very heavy and they are obliged to fold up a few kilometers in the North of Maltot.

The Americans progress with difficulty to the North of Periers and of Saint-Lo, and this in spite of the intensive bombardments of the aviation and of the Allied artillery. The American soldiers face in this area the very bloody fighting known under the name of the hedgerows war. They painfully leave the marshy area in the South of Carentan and progress untiring, although very slowly.

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About Rob Alexander

I am a writer, photographer and historian and the author of The History of Canmore, published by Summerthought Publishing of Banff, AB.

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