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Message from George Patton to US 5th Infantry Division

Editor's Note: The following content is a transcription of a period document or a collection of period statistics. It may be incomplete, inaccurate, or biased. The reader may not wish to take the content as factual.

17 Nov 1945


Office of the Commanding General
A P O 408

17 November, 1945

To the Officers and Men of the Fifth Infantry Division:

Nothing I can say can add to the glory which you have achieved.

Throughout the whole advance across France you spearheaded the attack of your Corps. You crossed so many rivers that I am persuaded many of you have web feet and I know that all of you have dauntless spirit. To my mind history does not record incidents of greater valor than your assault crossings of the Sauer and the Rhine.

Concerning the former operation, I showed the scene of your glorious exploit to a civilian for whom I have the highest esteem. After looking at it for some time he said, "I did not believe there was enough courage in the world to achieve such a victory." Knowing the Fifth Infantry Division, I was sure you would achieve it and you did.

Now that peace has been re-established I am sure all of you will continue through the remainder of your lives to stand for those great qualities of America which in war you so magnificently demonstrated.

with affectionate regards and sincere congratulations, I am, as ever,

Your devoted commander,


Michael Bilder, A Foot Soldier for Patton

Added By:
C. Peter Chen

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Anonymous says:
12 Aug 2020 08:23:18 PM

My father was a leutenant in the 5th division. He received silver and bronze star and 2 purple hearts. He is 99 years old. Still mentally sharp getting around on a walker.
Did not speak of the war for 40 years but opened up some since then.
2. Ed Sager says:
1 Nov 2021 10:54:38 AM

My father Willam H. "Bill" Sager, Jr., served in the 5th Infantry Division in 1945 at the end of the war. He just died at age 95 after living a very good life. He wrote about this commendation letter in his memoirs. It meant a great deal to receive this from General Patton.

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More on Message from George Patton to US 5th Infantry Division
Associated Figure(s):
» George Patton

Associated Event(s):
» Crossing the Rhine

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