36th INFANTRY DIVISION December 13, 1944: The 26th Infantry Divisiion, fighting desperately in the Colmar Pocket, was cut off. A fierce, fanatical enemy had smashed back the point of the Texas Division's lines, sliced hard through the flanks, cut rear communications. First battalion, 142nd Regiment, holding the left bank in Selestat, withstood vicious assaults of two Russia-hardened enemy divisions, sent them reeling back with heavy casualties. Five hundred Germans struck at the center of the line, infiltrated back as far as the 141st Regimental CP in Riquewihr. Cooks, clerks, other [illegible] troops had to be called to help drive them out. An enemy assault battalion of officer candidates slashed in from the south, cut the supply lines of the 3rd battalion, 143d Regiment. Meanwhile, German engineers slipped through to artillery positions, blew up a howitzer, mined and blocked a road to the rear. The ring around the T-Patchers was sealed. Swiftly and efficiently the 36th fought back. At the division CP in Ribeauville, every available man guarded road blocks. Anti-tank obstacles were hastily manned. MP and engineer patrols lashed out to clear the road. The 14d, cutting across a ridge to the rear of the infiltrating Germans, smashed strong reserves coming up the hill. The 36th held, slowly pushed back the stubborn Kraut thrusts, finally broke the steep trap. On December 9 its lines straightened, the 36th resumed its traditional role as attacker. This was just one year ago. The Germans hated and feared the 36th. They had met it before in the Vosges and the Riviera, at Cassino and Salerno, on the Marne in 1913. They had never been able to crush it; they never would. A proud division, the 36th boasted a history dating back to 1835 and the Alamo, to 1899 and the Rough Riders, to World War I. Originally composed of Texas National Guardsmen, the 36th was mobilized into the army of the United States Nov 25, 1940, at Camp Bowie, Texas, in the fiercest ice storm in Texas' history. In the next three years, with replacements from every state, the division maneuvered in the Carolinas and Lousiana, "invaded" Martha's Vineyard, trained at Massachusetts' Camp Edwards and Florida's Camp Blanding. It reached trim in Africa at Anzew and Rabat. The 36th. Infantry Division was first committed to action in World War II at Salerno, Italy on 9, September 1943. The div has a record that any division would be proud of.