Omaha to Pointe du Hoc
Parts Two to Four: The Next Day and Night
The Rangers moved out at first light, eager to reach their destination. They knew that the enemy was somewhere ahead but their exact location was unknown. Carefully they made their way through the bocage, every corner a potential death trap, every piece of open ground a possible killing field. To the Rangers’ relief they made it to their next position without meeting any great opposition.
Again darkness was approaching so the Ranger commanders decided to dig in and wait for daylight. On the other side the German forces were determined to counter attack and force the Americans to withdraw to the beaches. As night fell, they sent out patrols to try and determine the enemy’s positions and strength. They moved forward but were only partially successful in their mission. They met fierce opposition in the north but the other American positions remained hidden. The Germans withdrew their patrols and prepared for a night assault. Neither side had gained any great advantage.
The Rangers made ready for the attack, making sure to protect their escape route along the southern farm road. The German forces worked their way south in order to deny the road to the Americans. They moved through several farm buildings and finally made their assault over open ground and along the southern road. With the darkness to aid them they got close to the American lines when a vicious fire fight ensued. Sniper fire from the Rangers picked off a couple of non-commissioned officers, but the sniper was eventually shot while trying to conceal himself in a tree. Unfortunately for the German forces they were unable to breakthrough and had to withdraw. The day belonged to the Rangers.