Liberation of Russy in 1944 during the Battle of Normandy

Russy (Calvados)

The cities of Normandy during the 1944 battles

Liberation: June 7th, 1944

Deployed units:

Drapeau américain 26th Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division

Drapeau nazi Grenadier-Regiment 916, 352. Infanterie-Division

Drapeau nazi Grenadier-Regiment 726, 716. Infanterie-Division


When World War II breaks out in Europe, the town of Russy is still an autonomous village, which knows its first event in connection with the war in May 1940: the heirs of the throne of Belgium (Baudouin I, Albert II and the Princess Josephine Charlotte of Belgium) are staying at Russy Manor from 11 to 23 May following the invasion of their country by Germany. A month later, German troops arrive for four long years of occupation.

In the spring of 1944, and especially on June 6, the village of Russy witnesses the violent Allied bombardments that prepare for the landing at Omaha Beach, just three kilometers from the town. The Americans had planned to release the sector on D-Day, but the German defense prevents them from carrying out their offensive in accordance with the initial plans.

On 7 June, the Germans gathered scattered troops of Grenadier-Regiment 916 (352. Infanterie-Division) and Grenadier-Regiment 726 (716. Infanterie-Division) to try to prevent American forces from joining forces with the United States. Brits further east, coming from Gold Beach. But they lack unity of command and support weapons to fight their opponents effectively.

The 26th Infantry Regiment (1st Infantry Division), commanded by Colonel John F. R. Seitz, must recognize the coastal strip in the direction of Port-en-Bessin in order to quickly achieve the junction with the Allied troops. While the 3rd Battalion of the 26th IR, supported by Company B of the 745th Tank Battalion, proceeds along the eastward coast, the 1st Battalion advances on its right flank and makes a southerly movement for seize Russy. The village is reached at 17:05: the Germans have withdrawn towards Etréham as well as south of the national road 13. The American troops of the 1st battalion then continue their advance towards the Mont Cauvin.

Map of Russy:

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