Remember Red Ball Express

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The courageous drivers of the Red Ball Express during World War II have an amazing story, and Black History Month is the ideal time to tell it.

Supply trucks started rolling in August 1944, and this 24-7 trucking convoy stretched from Saint-Lô in Normandy to Paris. The drivers, mostly African-Americans serving in the Army Transportation Corps, were instrumental in getting supplies to the front lines as the U.S. forces advanced toward the enemy.

The drivers faced many hardships, such as the lack of sleep; the danger of night driving with only small beams of light; and the ever-present threat of German “buzz” bombs. The three months that the Red Ball Express was in existence saw more than 6,000 trucks carry more than 412,000 tons of vital supplies to the front lines.

In a fitting gesture, Congress passed a resolution on June 2, 2004, honoring the work of the African-American truck drivers in spite of the indignities and double standards they endured.

Many of these fine men are no longer with us, but we would do well to remember and appreciate their contribution to our country.

Sherri Jones Rivers

Augusta

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carcraft
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carcraft 02/25/13 - 06:28 am
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The Soldiers that operated

The Soldiers that operated the Red Ball express were incredible. They actually moved so much so fast they burned more fuel than they delivered. They were instrumental in the Normandy Beach invasion break out!

soapy_725
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soapy_725 02/25/13 - 12:00 pm
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It was told that they has such collective rhythem...
Unpublished

that an entire convoy would shift gears at the exact same time. Very efficient. White drivers were not so synchronized.

soapy_725
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soapy_725 02/25/13 - 12:00 pm
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What happened to the black heroes?
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Did the federal government take away all of their pride of accomplishment? Did the federal government create of them a subservient and utterly dependent class of Americans. We praise the good character of these black men and at the same time hate the values they exemplified. What is the logic?

It is fine to relegate these heroes to a history lesson. And then denounce the values of self discipline, hard work and perseverance as having not relevance.

dichotomy
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dichotomy 02/25/13 - 12:12 pm
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One of many stories of

One of many stories of honorable service by black members of the armed forces in a segregated military. From the dangerous duties of the Red Ball Express, loading explosive ordnance onto transport ships, the Tuskegee airmen, to the thousands who served as support personnel, cooks, medical orderlies, mechanics, etc.

In spite of the attitudes in this country at the time....and I'm talking nationwide...not just in the South, their service was admirable and they should all be commended and remembered for it with much pride and respect.

Conservative Man
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Conservative Man 02/25/13 - 08:57 pm
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As a history geek...

....I too, appreciate the efforts of the soldiers who were a part of the Red Ball Express....
An army is only as strong as it's supply line, and these fine men were an integral part of insuring that soldiers at the front had everything they needed to get the job done.
Their service and sacrifice should be remembered and honored. Not just this month, but every day......

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