Biography

Field, Eugene J. "Gene" [LtCol. 2ndBn8thCR]

biography

2/8_Cav

The next day
[24th] four different attempts by three American light tanks failed to dislodge the enemy behind the 2d Battalion, and Lt. Col. Eugene J. Field, the 2d Battalion commander, was wounded at the roadblock.

The two-battalion 8th Cav Regiment was first into battle. It was commanded by Raymond D. Palmer (VMI, 1924), forty-nine. Hap Gay had assumed the regiment would be committed as a "full" and integrated unit, normally mated with the 99th FAB, commanded by Robert W. Holmes. But he was mistaken. As he had the 24th Division units, Walker fragmented the 8th Cav. The 1/8, commanded by Robert W. Kane, thirty-four, and temporarily supported by the 77th FAB and a few light tanks and A/A vehicles, would block the Taegu - Taejon road, loosely tying in with the 25th Division on its right. The 2/8, commanded by Eugene J. Field, forty-two, and supported by the 61st FAB, which was commanded by Alden O. Hatch, would deploy seven miles south of the 1/8 to block another road leading to Taegu from Muju. There would be no physical link between the 1/8 and 2/8. Gay protested the dispersion of his forces, but to no avail.[6-42]

While the 8th Cav was moving into its fragmented positions, Hap Gay rushed his two-battalion 5th Cav Regiment forward to provide a division reserve. The 5th Cav was commanded by a dashing old horse cavalryman, Carl J. ("Rosie") Rohsenberger, who was nearing his fifty-sixth birthday - far too old for regimental command - and was also almost totally deaf. Rohsenberger had entered the Army eons ago as a private and slowly worked his way up.

He was a fighter, eager to make a mark in this unexpected conflagration in the evening of his career.[6-43]


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