Special features of this website may be accessed by clicking the appropriate link on the menu to the left, including include a Gallery with albums containing pictures of historical and contemporary interest, slideshows about the 761st Tank Battalion's training at Camp Claiborne, Louisiana, and Camp Hood, Texas, and a Forum with discussions of topics of interest.  Registered members may add comments to items in The Forum and Gallery.

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"In September 1943, the Panthers moved to Camp Hood, Texas. There most of the battalion left the light, M-5 Stuart tank and moved to the M-4 medium Sherman tank. For the year they were at Camp Hood, the Panthers were the aggressor tanks for the tank destroyer units and worked to give those units the best possible combat training. Consistently the 761st outmaneuvered and defeated other units. It was the Panthers’ superior tactical proficiency and genuine pride in their accomplishments that led to their cockiness — real or perceived. This expertise and confidence proved crucial to their combat lethality. While at Camp Hood, the battalion came up with the ferocious black panther as its insignia. Its motto, 'Come out fighting,' was adopted from boxer Joe Louis. When asked how he planned to fight German Max Schmeling in 1938, Louis responded, 'I am going to come out fighting.'" [DiNicolo]

 

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Chapel at Camp Hood
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Motorcycle training at Camp Hood - Harry K. Tyree (left) and Fred L. Brown
Staff Sgt. Ruben Rivers, posthumously awarded the   Medal of Honor (photo: Anese Rivers-Woodfork, taken at Camp   Hood)
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The bus stop at Camp Hood
R. Woodward, Camp Hood, Texas, 1944 (by LZ Anderson)
PFC ‘Ace’ Moran, Camp Hood, Texas, 1944 (by LZ Anderson)
Left to right: R. Woodward, Frank House, Harris,   unknown, and L.Z. Anderson in front of their barracks at Camp Hood,   Texas, 1944 (by LZ Anderson)
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Tank destroyer training at Camp Hood;
WW II post card of a towed tank destroyer of the type the 761st trained against
M 18, used by tank destroyer battalions in Europe late in WWII
Entrance gate at Camp Hood
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Entrance gate after redesignated Fort Hood
Cover of brochure from 761st Tank Battalion   Monument Site Announcement, September 15, 1993, Fort Hood,   Texas
LTC Charles ‘Pop’ Gates, ARNG-Ret, at Fort Hood,   Texas, September 15, 1993, Monument Site Announcement
Brig. Gen. Leon J. LaPorte, Fort Hood Chief of   Staff, and Lt. Col. (Ret) Philip W. Latimer of the 761st at Monument   Site dedication September 15, 1993
October 14, 1994, naming of 761st Tank Battalion Avenue at Ford Hood, Texas
Cover of brochure from dedication of Rivers Processing Center, Fort Hood, Texas, June 30, 1995
Phil Latimer, unknown, Johnnie Holmes, unknown,   unknown, Beverly Taylor, unknown, E.G. McConnell (kneeling), June 30,   1995
Secretary of the Army Togo West, CW2 Edmond K.   Foster, artist of 761st Limited Edition print, August 22, 1996, Fort   Hood, Texas

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Camp Claiborne Slideshow

The 761st Tank Battalion was activated on April 1, 1942, at Camp Claiborne near Alexandria, Louisiana, and deployed to Europe, landing at Omaha Beach in France on October 10, 1944.  At Camp Claiborne "its members were greeted by substandard living conditions, housed in the least desirable areas of the camp. They had to contend with racial tensions on and off base." [DiNicolo] Among the images in this slideshow are photos taken by 761st Veterans, pictures from the National Archives and contemporaneous post cards.

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Camp Claiborne main entrance
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Headquarters at Camp Claiborne
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Tank crew at Camp Claiborne
Arriving at Camp Claiborne
Service Club, Camp Claiborne
Sports arena, Camp Claiborne
Boxing matches at Camp Claiborne  -- upper left: heavyweight champ Joe Louis
Andrew \"Andy\" Hall at Camp Claiborne (by LZ Anderson)
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Hospital area at Camp Claiborne
5th Tank Group, 761st TK BN, at Camp Claiborne
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Chapel at Camp Claiborne
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