Anzio, Italy

On January 16th, 1943 the 6615th Ranger Force was created as a provisional unit composed of the 1st, 3rd and 4th Ranger Battalions with attached supporting units. The Ranger Force's first mission was Operation Shingle, an effort to land troops at Anzio, a seacoast town located forty miles from Rome.

The Ranger Force would be working alongside the British 1st Division, the 3rd Infantry Division and the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 82nd Airborne Division.

Operation Shingle commenced on the morning of January 22nd, 1944, and the initial beach landings were relatively uneventful. The Germans responded quickly, however, and the 1st and 3rd Ranger Battalions were later surrounded and captured in the vicinity of Cisterna di Latina on January 30th.

With almost all of their men captured or dead, the 1st and 3rd Ranger Battalions were essentially destroyed, and would never fight again. The final tally for the two battalions was 12 killed, 36 wounded and 743 captured. Only 6 men managed to escape and return to friendly territory. The 4th Ranger Battalion left Italy on March 27th, 1944.


Captain Miller and Sergeant Horvath make reference to Anzio when talking about Vecchio in the abandoned church in Neuville. It can be assumed that Miller, Horvath and Vecchio were members of the 4th Ranger Battalion at Anzio, since the 2nd Ranger Battalion was still training in the United Kingdom at this time. With only six Rangers of the 1st and 3rd Battalions having escaped death or capture, it is beyond unlikely that Miller and Horvath would have been among their numbers.