Anzio Beach Soldier – 1st Armored Division: Edward McAlice.

The Battle at Anzio Beach, Italy is, without question, one of the key engagements of World War II.  This past summer, the History Junkie had the pleasure of attending a Reunion of Anzio Beach Veterans.  Talking with these folks was a truly moving experience, and one I shall never forget.  My latest release, EVERYTOWN, USA also contains the stories of infantryman, Ralph Conner, who fought and died at Anzio with the 3rd Infantry Division and General William Eagles, who commanded the 45th Infantry Division at Anzio. Simply put, I have a keen interest in Anzio Beach.

From the beginning, we here at have always tried to be an interactive site.  When a follower requests assistance, we attempt to steer them in a helpful direction.

Edward McAlice - 1st Armored Division

We recently received the following request from Catherine Landry of Rhode Island.  “I am very interested in the Anzio story. My dad’s brother was killed there on May 31, 1944. His name was Edward McAlice and he was 19 when he died. He was from Rhode Island. My dad passed away in 1982 and never really spoke of his brother to me. I wish I had been interested enough to ask him more when I was young. Now there is really no one who can tell me much about Eddie. I do have photos and his Vmail letters to his mother – my grandmother. I know it’s a long shot at this point – but would love to know if anyone out there remembers him.”

In digging a little deeper, we do know that Eddie fought with the 6th Armored Regiment/6th Armored Battalion of the 1st Armored Division.

Of course, prior to their participation at Anzio Beach, the 1st Armored was heavily involved in North Africa, including the Kasserine Pass.  They took part in the assault on the Winter Line, near Naples, Italy, before joining the attack at Anzio in January 1944.

From the The Rock Of Anzio: From Sicily To Dachau, A History Of The U.S. 45th Infantry Division by Flint Whitlock, we find McAlice’s unit heading into battle.  “In the black, rainy, predawn hours of the nineteenth, the Allied counterattack got underway as elements of the 1st Armored Division’s 6th Armored Infantry Regiment, draped in their glistening ponchos, moved through the 180th’s lines on their way to hit the eastern flank of the enemy salient.  Rain-slicked tanks roared and clanked in the darkness and slithered on the muddy roads.  The men of the 180th, crouching in the ditches and water-filled holes, waved to the passing troops, called out ‘good luck’ and ‘give ‘em hell,’ and flashed the thumbs up, or V-for-victory sign, but troubles soon manifested themselves.” The middle February fighting at Anzio would prove some of the most brutal of the war.

McAlice would survive winter.  In late May, the Allies broke from Anzio Beachhead.  On May 31, the day of McAlice’s death, the 6th Armored was pushing onto Rome, battling the Germans near Albano.

In the end, Allied casualties during the Italian Campaign would top 300,000.  Edward McAlice is buried at the Sicily-Rome American Cemetery in Nettuno, Italy.

That’s about all we’ve got.  We’re looking for help out there with PFC Edward McAlice, the 6th Armored Regiment of the 1st Armored Division and Anzio Beach.  Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

4 Responses to “Anzio Beach Soldier – 1st Armored Division: Edward McAlice”

  1. Daniel Lehan(In Brazil,by way of MD.) says:

    In looking up my Uncles W.W.2 Italian records,and
    doing research myself,I have learned a great Deal.
    The 6th was formed from 3 groups,34th DIV.(133rd
    135th &168th Inf)1st Arm.Div.&6TH ARM. REGT.This
    Edward was in “Combat Command A”.Just to the left of
    him,and slightly out front was My Uncle Joe Lehans´
    179th INF. REGT.(45TH DIV.),& Directly out in front of him were the 133rd & 135th INF.REGTS, Alternately.
    Infantry was always used to screen for the Armoured forces in rolling terrain.Here are some of the Reports.
    “The 34th DIV.Lost more men on this day,than any other day of W.W. 2,over 530 days of War”.May 31st
    1944. ALSO “The 179th Inf.Regt. had launched an attack to the West of the 133rd Inf. (34th DIV.)and nearly had been decimated,one Company had 1 officer& 35 men,and the other Companies were little better off “.The 1ST ARM DIV. Lost 37 Tanks & 133
    casualties on May 29th,and on May 30th Lost another
    23 Tanks & 211 casualties.The 179th Inf. had to be
    replaced by the 180th Inf. in the wee hours of June 1.
    6 Medal of Honor winners over these 2 days ,4 of them
    Posthumously.Lanuvio-Villa Crocetta,ItalyMay28-June 3,1944.”The 133rd.Inf. Regt. Captured Lanuvio,Italy
    after a bitter and costly 5 day struggle”.June 3,1944.
    SEE “The story of the First ARM.Div.” 64 PPs.The 34th
    Div.History as well as “A partial Hist. of the 135th Inf.Regt”.”Morning reports” of the 179th Inf.(May 44`) Regt.ALSO SEE, “U.S.Army Hist. File #603-133-1945
    Lt.Col. Waltr J. Skelly 1st Battalion,133rd Inf.Regt.” &
    “The battle Hist.of the 1ST ARM. DIV.”George F.Howe
    (Wash.1954,Combat forces press) The Germans had 2 months to prepare for this battle they knew was coming,and These Paratroopers had fought all over Europe in every kind of condition imaginable.At or Near
    Villa-Crocetta (HILL 209) on May 30th 1944,these units
    went into Battle together; The 135th Inf.Regt(2nd Batt.)
    The 6th Armoured Infantry, (Regt.?),the 1st & 2nd.Batt.
    of the 1ST. ARM.DIV. At the approaches were 5-6
    Trenches,5 to 6 feet Deep,ringing the town.Machine Guns,Heavy Mortars,Tanks and self propelled guns,
    and Artillery,& Sadly U.S. Artillery landed on them as
    well due to Communications bieng out.This battle didn´t
    end until June 1st,the evening before the 36th Div.had
    scaled Monte Artemisio(Which the Germans thought
    impossible) on the German Flanks,and U.S. Artillery
    started raining down on the German positions shortly
    thereafter.O-N-L-Y T-H-E-N did some of the Germans
    start surrendering.Their sole Job was to Hold the attackers up for 2 Days,LONG ENOUGH for Kesselrings´forces to retreat North of Rome to new
    Defensive positions there.Why the Army Air Corps
    didn´t drop Paratroops on Highways 6 and 7,I will never
    understand.That was the time to use them.I want to say
    I am sorry for the Loss of your loved one,HE WAS A
    REAL HERO AS HE GAVE HIS LIFE FOR OUR FREEDOMS,my Uncle survived the War,only By Gods´
    Grace though,he had just Turned 19 that March.Please Pass this info along,I hope it helps those
    whom it is intended for,and do please read the refs,
    they will be very helpful as well. All these are on-line.
    There are some photos as well,2 were taken By ARMY
    SIGNAL CORPS,which(Now that I learned a finite story)
    instead of the glorified, propogandized one his Regt.
    had printed,that show the 6th ARM.
    INF. REGT. on May 24,1944,marching past a Knocked out U.S. Tank near Anzio,headed to the Front and one

    with the 16th ARM. ENG.Batt. (Minesweepers) making
    a path through booby-trapped wreckage,near to the
    front ,on the same date. Go to Color Pics of W.W.2 &
    you´ll see a wide variety of photos from the Anzio Theatre of War.Anzio also has a NEW Museum and
    they may be able to help you on-line.There is also a
    “Veterans of Anzio” Society that may help too.Try to
    post a message on either the 133rd OR 135ths
    Danny Lehan,Nephew of MST. SGT Joe Lehan
    CO.B 179th Inf. Regt,45TH DIV

  2. Steve Nahlik says:

    My uncle, Richard Weber of House Springs, Missouri, was killed at Anzio Beach. I was trying to see if I could find out what happened to him, and came across this website. Any suggestions?

  3. Arlene O. says:

    My dad, fought in Anzio. His name was Wilbert Gallagher. He was a good man. He became shell-shocked there. I always wanted one day to see Anzio. He was 1ST Amoured.

    • Catherine Landry says:

      Hello Arlene:
      As mentioned, it was my dad’s brother, Edward, who died at Anzio. He was 19 when he died. Of course, I never met him. My husband and I were privileged to travel to Rome twice – in 2007 and 2014 and visited Anzio and Nettuno. The cemetery there is awesome. We were lucky enough to be included in their 2014 Memorial Day celebration. It was very moving. Hope you get to go sometime. Well worth it.

Leave a Reply

Search this Site

Purchase the Books


Privacy Policy