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99th Infantry

The 99th Infantry Division originally began in July 1918 with the establishment of the Headquarters 99th Division, it was reorganized as the 99th Infantry Division in April 1942. The 99th Infantry Division was ordered to active military service November 15, 1942 at Camp Van Dorn, Mississippi.


The 99th is known as the Checkerboard Division. The name originates from the shoulder patch design, which is a five sided shield of black on which a horizontal band of blue and white squares is superimposed.

Upon arrival at Camp Van Dorn in December 1942 the men of the 99th Infantry had to help finish the camp in preparation for training, which was to begin January 4, 1943. Major General Walter Laurer, Division Commander wrote;

"Camp Van Dorn hastily built as the army mushroomed in every direction was a tarpaper shanty town sprawled across the red mud of Southern Mississippi. Men of the Division not only faced basic training, but one of the most miserable winters in years".

The 99th completed their basic and advance training at Van Dorn, and moved on to Louisiana for maneuvers in November 1943.
The 99th arrived in England in October 1944, from there they moved into LeHarve, France in November 1944. The Division's next move was to Aubel, Belgium to prepare for combat. Campaigns of the 99th included Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace, and Central Europe. The 99th Infantry Division played an instrumental part in the Battle of the Bulge.

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