10731175_864278768324_6652495841818704250_nOn March 24 1943 Arthur Chaney enlisted as an Infantry Rifleman in the US Army. He finished his Basic Training and was assigned to 3rd Infantry Division, 15th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Battalion, K Company around the summer of 1943. In the late summer and fall he was sent to Northern Africa awaiting transportation to the front lines in Italy. His first major battle would be The Battle of Anzio, which took place from January 22- June 5 1944. It would be here that he would have his first beachhead assault, breaking into Italy via an amphibious Amtrak vehicle. At the battles height it had 150,000 allied soldiers fighting a well dug in 135,000 Nazi and Italian Axis soldiers. The battle would ultimately take 43,000 casualties with 7,000 of those being killed, and an additional 36,000 wounded or missing. During this time was also the battle of Monte Casino which the 3rd Infantry division supported. This battle further into Italy had another 55,000 casualties. Fighting would rage in Italy throughout the summer but the 15th Infantry would be taken out in preparation for Operation Dragoon the allied Invasion of Southern France. Operation Dragoon would commence on August 15 1944 and would continue on until September 15. It was a full on assault on Southern France with 200,000 allied forces landing and fighting. This would be Art’s second beachhead assault. The loses for this month long battle were 2,550 killed or captured with 7,000 more casualties. From here Art would fight deeper into France in the Rhineland Campaign with many skirmishes and run ins with the retreating German Army. It was during this campaign that Art was wounded by shrapnel taking a hill with his squad and eventually captured by German troops.  In his own words “I got hit in the hands when something blew up near me, I covered my face and only took it in the hands which was lucky. We kept advancing up the hill and when we got to the top we were outnumbered and ambushed by the Germans. One of them said in English Halt! Two other guys took off running and they shot them as they ran. I thought it’d be better to just stay”. This was on September 28 1944. He is imprisoned in Stallag 7 A, a german POW camp around November 1944 until April 1945. Conditions in the camp were harsh in the Winter months with the prisoners often being feed grass soup and potatoes. Stalag VII-A was liberated on 29 April 1945 by Combat Command A of the 14th Armored Division. A German proposal for an armistice was rejected, followed by a short, uneven battle between the American tanks and retreating German soldiers for control of bridges across the Amper and Isar rivers. The German contingent included “remnants of the 17th SS Panzer Grenadier and 719th Infantry Divisions…who had no tanks or antitank guns, and were armed only with small arms, machine guns, mortars, and panzerfausts”. Large numbers surrendered, as did the camp’s 240 guards. The American force learned of the existence of the camp and its approximate location only a few hours before the attack. Because so many Allied POWs were in the area, the U.S. artillery, a major factor in any attack, was ordered not to fire, and remained silent during the attack. According to official German sources, there had been 76,248 prisoners at the camp in January 1945. It was after this that Art was repatriated into the US Army and sent home to recuperate from the war. He 1795903_864278833194_9095566983093211188_owas awarded the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, the Prisoner Of War Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, The European Campaign Medal with one silver star for 5 battles and a Bronze Arrowhead Device, the WW2 Victory Medal, 4 Overseas Bars and the Combat Infantryman’s Badge for combat action.He was discharged as a Corporal in the summer of 1945 and continued on as the man we all knew and loved.