Units of the 28th Infantry Division During Battle of the Bulge*
Commanded by Maj. Gen. Norman D. Cota; Gen. George A. Davis, assistant commander
- 109th, 110th, and 112th Infantry Regiments
- 109th and 687th Field Artillery Battalions
- 103rd Combat Engineer Battalion
- (road and bridge maintenance, set and clear mine fields)
- 707th Tank Battalion
- 630th Tank Destroyer Battalion
- 447th Anti-Aircraft Artillery Battalion
- 103rd Medical Battalion
*Action Report, Col. Daniel B. Strickler
At 0530 on December 16, 1944, 2000 artillery shells exploded from the German side of the Our River, landing on the sleepy American held Luxembourg towns just across the river, signaling the beginning of the Battle of the Bulge, the greatest battle ever fought by the American Army. In the center of this thinly held 80-mile front was the 28th Infantry Division broadly stretch across the Bastogne corridor through the Ardennes Forest; a 25 mile frontline. The 112th Infantry Regiment protected five miles of the northern section, the 109th covered nine miles on the southern end, and the 110th Infantry Regiment was responsible for the ten and a half mile section in the middle. Still recovering and rebuilding from the Hürtgen Forest action in November, the 110th only had enough men to defend five towns along the key roads that led to Bastogne, Belgium; a critical town for the Americans to defend as it had seven major roads running through it.
At the midpoint of the 110th’s section was the village of Hosingen, which lies along the Ober-Eisenbach-Hosingen-Drauffelt route from Germany to Bastogne, the most crucial road in the corridor. From Hosingen, the road provided access to two bridges the Germans would need to control for an assault on Bastogne.
As the American defenses were being assaulted by artillery, immediately knocking out almost all communication between the division’s regimental, battalion and company level command posts, German soldiers began their coordinated ground assault on all locations as thousands of troops were already closely positioned to move with the first sounds of artillery being fired.
Despite the destruction of most of their communication network, it took just a few hours for commanding officer of the 28th, Major Gen. Norman Cota, to determine that his division was under a massive assault across his entire sector. Realizing the 110th was defending the most critical positions, he ordered them to “Hold at all cost”, an order later echoed by VIII Corp commanding officer, Maj Gen. Troy Middleton, once the significance of the Hitler’s assault was realized.