The occupation of the ridge line by the Iron Dukes was proceeded by the Bde Engineers who were escorted by the Bn Scts. The Sct Plt Ldr was given a rough batch of graphics by Duke 6 and was told, "Nothing fancy, just have them dig basic positions, as many as you can in 4hr. It was 0600hrs, it would take them 1hr to get to the ridge line, 1hr to sight the positions. That left them 2.5 to dig....The Sct Plt Ldr was a tanker, with a tankers eye for long range fields of fire. They started from the north and worked south. As the Engineer Co Cdr and Scout traversed the ridge line, the Scout would stop, point and move on. The Eng Cdr would order his bulldozers to dig. "15 minutes max, then move south along the ridge" ordered the Engineer.
By 1000hrs the Bn had closed upon the battle position. The fighting positions were not the 2 tiered ones but rather piles of dirt for the tanks to stay hull down. It was better than nothing, and the tankers of the Iron Dukes had many.
32 M1A1's were in position to meet any advance through the gap and down the K73...
SFC Ryden was resting his head on the head rest of his sight extension as his gunner scanned their sector. The crew of A34, as with the rest of the Bn had been up since stand too at 0500. The hurried warning order, the road march, the arrival upon their current position with no quartering party except the Scouts, let Ryden know that the time was near.....
"Sarge, you better take a look at this" said Ryden's gunner. Ryden looked through GPSE and after a second saw what his gunner was seeing. Multiple black dots were moving down the highway..."Switch back to the daylight channel Jimmy" order Ryden...The gunner rotated a switch and the thermal image became a clear daylight one. Even at 10x magnification, it was difficult to determine the types of vehicles coming down the K73. "jimmy. get me a range in First Return." ordered the TC. The gunner flipped the LRF to "First Return as there was no interferring terrain between his tank and the target and thumbed the LRF button on his cadillacs.. "4570, said the gunner... "Red 1, Red 4, spot report...."
Red 1 had also spotted the the vehicles..."This is 1, going higher...." Within 15 seconds, all of the Dukes knew it was time...
SFC Cap also saw the vehicles coming through the gap. "Sir, here they come." Merritt pushed the toggle on his CVC forward....Thunder 6, Duke 6, contact east, out......"
The following 15 minutes felt like 15 seconds for all involved. The ridge line erupted into a sheet of flame as the Tank Commanders went to work. By the time it was over, some 15 enemy vehicles were burning...
< Message edited by bootlegger267 -- 11/3/2019 2:33:21 AM >