Segment 6

Annotation

They were supposed to leave around 4 p.m., but they were delayed because the area around Schweinheim had not been secured. Baum went through later anyway, but lost the crucial element of surprise. Baum thought the mission could have worked if it was a surprise attack, but that was eliminated. He knew something was wrong when he did not have the Division's support or contact with the Division. A Piper Cub [Annotator's Note: Piper J-3 Cub] had been used to follow them and maintain contact, but he only went as far as he felt safe, then he pulled back, causing them to lose verbal contact. Baum only had 3 or 4 hours to put the task force together; actually Cohen and Abrams put the task force together. The task force was made up of a company of infantry, company of light tanks, company of medium tanks, a recon platoon, assault gun platoon-- 3 tanks with a 105 millimeter cannon-- and a medic and maintenance platoon which carried extra ammo and gas. Baum's orders were orders. He reflects on the mission and mentions the website taskforcebaum.de and the author Peter Domes who wrote about the Hammelburg Raid. Their biggest enemies were the German civilians with the Panzerfausts [Annotator's Note: German anti-tank weapon]. They did not face German tanks until they reached the road going into Hammelburg. He recalls that Stiller was there to identify John Waters, Patton's son-in-law, but Baum did not think about this, he thought about completing the mission. successfully.

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