American Grit Stories

Lost Battalion Didn’t Lose Fighting Spirit 5/5 (3)

We usually write about a singular American hero or inspiring individual. Today will be a little different, we’re going to write about one entire unit in the United States Army. They are literally everything we want to be in life. Men of purpose, will, tenacious fighting spirit and a little bit of cocky attitude. We’re going to tell you about the Lost Battalion, from World War I.

These men, (roughly 554 of them) from nine companies of the 77th Infantry Division endured all sorts of hardships and despite all of it, they fought on with the kind of swagger that one could only expect from a unit that is entirely surrounded by the enemy. If you’re going to die, and least be an asshole to the enemies before you do. Mad props to these hard-charging men.

How did this all occurs, well, one fine day in World War 1 (there were no fine days in that bloody meatgrinder), the Allied forces launched an attack. The units to the left and right of the 77th were not as successful at breaking through the German lines as they had been. Soon, they found themselves surrounded by the enemy. When you’re surrounded by the enemy, things like ammo, food, and water tend to run low. It’s not like the enemy is going to make sure it’s a fair fight. The German army demanded their surrender. They refused. Their own forces dropped artillery on them and the Germans again demanded they surrender. Again they were like “No, we think we’re doing alright and you can f*** off in that general direction.”

Lost Battalion

For almost a week these men fought and maintained their fighting spirit never losing hope, and never surrendering. Maybe as we remember them, we take a page from their book and when we find ourselves in dire circumstance, we approach it with the same determination and grit that these men displayed. Of the original 554 men, only 194 walked out without a scratch and another 197 had been killed with another 150 being captured. And you think your week was rough.

 

Read more stories of American Grit here:

ROY BOEHM: SETTING THE STANDARD

IRA HAYES: A FORGOTTEN HERO

NEIL FRUSTAGLIO: LEAVE NO ONE BEHIND

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The Author

John Fannin

John Fannin

John spent four years as a 0351, Infantry Assaulltman in the United States Marine Corps. He deployed twice to the city of Ramadi, Iraq with 3rd Battalion 7th Marines. After leaving the Marine Corps in 2008 John pursued a degree in Kinesiology from Texas Lutheran University. During his time at TLU, John was fortunate enough to play football for a year and serve the local community as a volunteer firefighter. After graduating John worked as a personal trainer for few years before coming to work at American Grit. John is also the proud owner of a great beard.