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G.I. Combat Vol 1 269

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"A Tunnel Through Hell": The Haunted Tank and her crew spot a flare fired from the location where Sgt. Rock and Easy Company are plugging a hole in the battle line. Jeb orders the tank in their direction, knowing that if Sgt. Rock is asking for help, they must be in real trouble. On their way, t


Quote1 When Sgt. Rock sends up an S.O.S., they must be low on everything to block the enemy-- except their blood! Quote2
-- Lt. Jeb Stuart



Appearing in "A Tunnel Through Hell"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

Villains:

  • German Infantry soldiers

Other Characters:

  • Italian Peasant farmer
  • Italian Peasant woman

Locations:

Vehicles:

Synopsis for "A Tunnel Through Hell"

The Haunted Tank and her crew spot a flare fired from the location where Sgt. Rock and Easy Company are plugging a hole in the battle line. Jeb orders the tank in their direction, knowing that if Sgt. Rock is asking for help, they must be in real trouble. On their way, they pass through a lemon tree grove, and Jeb remembers back to a time when the Haunted Tank was in a battle with a Panzer in a similar lemon grove. He can still remember the small of blood and lemons from the battle. They leave the grove and head up a steep hill, causing Jeb to remember a time when they were ordered to take position on top of a similar hill to await the arrival of the German forces coming in on rafts. It was a massacre, with the Haunted Tank having the high ground picking off the Germans was like a turkey shoot. Later, as they cross a bridge over the river, Jeb once again reminisces about a recent battle when the German Panzers were using the cover of night to cross a similar bridge. The Haunted Tank destroyed the bridge from below, sending the Panzers and the Germans inside down to a watery grave. Jeb feels sorrow towards the Germans from all three battles. He wishes that somehow the Haunted Tank could be used to save a life instead of always taking it.

The Haunted Tank finally reaches Easy Company, Sgt. Rock is leading his men in a fight to the death without ammo. They are down to the cold steel, keeping a nearby Panzer from blasting Easy Company into bloody shreds. Rick fires a shell, destroying the Panzer before it can destroy them. The arrival of the Haunted Tank turns the tide for Easy Company, and they are able to easily defeat the Germans in the area. Even though they won the battle, Jeb feels as if it was a loss. Just a lot of senseless bloodshed. Jeb bids Easy Company farewell, and the Haunted Tank continues on.

Later that day, the tank comes across a cart carrying a young peasant couple. Their village had been shelled by the Germans, and the peasant man are trying to make it to shelter before his wife, who is pregnant, goes into labor. Jeb offers to help them, telling the peasant to follow their tank back to base camp and the field hospital. Sgt. Craig moves the tank slowly so that the peasant and his cart can keep up with them, but the woman soon begins to go into labor and they can go on no further. They find a nearby farmhouse, and Gus and Rick help out by boiling water and using their own t-shirts to sterilize and wrap the baby. After a short wait, the peasant rushes out of the barn to announce the birth of his baby boy. The new life has helped lift the spirits of the crew of the Haunted Tank.

Later that day, they head back to base camp and load up the tank with c-rations, clothing, and everything else they can think of for the family to use and head back towards the farm. The guys kid Sgt. Craig, telling him that maybe the family will name their newborn son after him. Along the way, a mysterious fog rolls in, making it impossible to find their way through. They spend hours trying to find their way back to the farm, but it is no use. Night falls, and Jeb is forced to order the tank back to base before they truly get lost. Then, in the sky, a light glitters like a flare shining bright. It's a star in the east, lighting their way back to base. Jeb wishes Sgt. Rock could see it, their own "light at the end of the tunnel".

Appearing in "The Suicide Six"

Featured Characters:

  • Unnamed Secret Agents (Dies)

Supporting Characters:

Villains:

  • German Infantry soldiers

Other Characters:

  • Saskia

Locations:

Items:

  • Explosive belts
  • Heavy water

Vehicles:

  • German Volkswagen Kübelwagen personnel carrier

Synopsis for "The Suicide Six"

At the Office of Strategic Services in London, the man only known as Control is briefing a group of six anonymous agents on the latest intelligence from Norway. Recently, a group of Norwegian commandos, aided by the British, blew up a top-secret Nazi "heavy water" plant setting back Hitler's program for an atom bomb. But the Nazis have constructed another. But this new plant is virtually indestructible and right in the middle of Amsterdam. They are instructed by an agent from the Dutch Underground named Saskia that the plant is concealed in a group of government buildings sixty feet below street level and thirty feet under the bottom of the canal. Control tells them that it's a suicide mission, and the plan is to attack the building in a car in broad daylight.

Fifty miles southeast of Amsterdam, the O.S.S. team parachute down at night at the signal of the members of the Dutch Underground in the area. They are quickly ushered into a car and drive off. Seconds after their departure. Nazi agents arrive and gun down the Underground operatives. They speed off in pursuit of the O.S.S. spies. The O.S.S. spies notice that they're being followed, and lob a couple of grenades onto the road behind them. They explode under the Nazi car, destroying it.

The O.S.S. agents arrive in Amsterdam as dawn breaks. They drop off Saskia and one of the agents, then continue on towards the target. The car arrives at the government buildings, which are heavily guarded by German soldiers. The agents open fire as they pass by, killing many of the soldiers out front. However, they are spotted by a machine gun nest, who opens fire on the car killing two of the agents and sending it out of control and into one of the canals nearby. As the car sinks to the bottom, the two remaining agents inside jump out in full scuba gear. They swim along the canal until they reach a sewer grate under the government building and use it to gain entry into the sub-basements. Unknown to them, when they removed the grating a silent alarm was triggered. As they enter the building, they are surrounded by German soldiers. The agents are disarmed, and the Nazi commander decides that since they are now harmless he will personally give them a tour of the factory. As soon as the tour is complete, the Nazi commander orders his men to throw the agents into the vat. But he had been tricked. The agents are wearing weighted belts lines with high-intensity explosives. The agents detonate the belts, and the entire hard water plant is destroyed. The dead had successfully carried out their mission.

Appearing in "Mekong Madness"

Featured Characters:

  • The Bravos
  • Sergeant Bullett
  • Lance Corporal Kiley
  • Private Levy
  • Private Luney
  • Private Wallis
  • Private Somers
  • Private Douglas
  • Private Pilsudski
  • Private Gomez

Villains:

  • Viet Cong soldiers

Other Characters:

  • Benny Berger (Flashback only)
  • American Infantry officer
  • Lieutenant Brady (Dies)
  • American Green Beret soldiers (all die)

Locations:

Items:

  • M18A1 Claymore mines

Vehicles:

  • American Bell UH-1 Iroquois helicopters

Synopsis for "Mekong Madness"

After watching the helicopter take off with the body of the recently killed comedian Benny Berger, the Bravos dig in on top of Hamburger Hill for the evening. Their orders are to hold the hill at all costs. The men argue among themselves, believing that the Viet Cong have left the area and that the claymores they planted at the bottom of the hill will tip them off to the enemy's approach. However, the VC are able to bypass the claymores and attack the hill with grenades. Their shots are way off, and Sgt. Bullett realizes that the VC are trying to discover their position. He orders his men to hold their fire and roll their own grenades down the hill towards the enemy. The grenades roll down until they stop at the feet of the VC, then detonate. Many are killed in the explosions, and then the Bravos open fire to take out the rest. Those that survive the attack fade back into the night to regroup.

The Bravos hold their position for two more days until HQ sent a couple of choppers to pick them up. As they were airlifted out, the VC retake the abandoned hill and say goodbye with FLAK fire. On their way back to base, the men take the time to unwind - reading, joking, and playing poker. A week later, Bravo is transferred to a new base north of Chau Phu near the Mekong River. The men of Bravo watch as a company of Green Berets march into camp despite having been recently bloodied and bruised in combat. The men admire their strength. A couple of days later at dawn, Sgt. Bullet and Cpl. Kiley are called in to their commander's office to learn that the Green Berets have went AWOL, heading for a South Vietnamese assault flotilla on the river. The Bravos are ordered to bring the Geern Berets back, anyway possible. It doesn't take long for the Bravos to catch up to the Green Berets, who tell them that they have unofficial unfinished business up stream. The Bravos agree to go with them.

The flotilla with both the Green Berets and the Bravos on it heads north on the Cai Lon River. They are attacked further up by the Viet Cong, but manage to make it through the fire upstream to land on the Cambodian side of the river, an area off limits to Americans. They slosh through the jungle for most of the day until they come to an area where the Viet Cong have built a prisoner of war camp. Lieutenant Brady tells the Bravos that the VC have three of his men prisoner in the camp, and they intend to break them out. As soon as it's night, Lt. Brady tells Sgt. Bullett to have Bravo give them backup fire while they break in. They are spotted trying to cut down the barbed wire, and a heavy firefight ensues. The Green Berets are taken down, but not before they are able to break through the camp's defenses. Lt. Brady gives the order for the Bravos to use the Green Berets' bodies as stepping stones through the wire fence. The Bravos attack, and after a fierce fight take out the remaining VC soldiers and destroy the defenses. The prisoners are freed, but none of the Green Berets lived to see it. They are buried and their dog tags are collected. On their way back to base, Cpl. Kiley asks Bullett what they are going to tell the captain. Bullett says to tell him nothing. Just give him the dog tags.

Appearing in "Glory Ride"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

Villains:

  • German Artillery soldiers

Other Characters:

  • French children
  • Confederate Cavalry soldiers (Flashback only)
  • Union Infantry soldiers (Flashback only)

Locations:

Vehicles:

Synopsis for "Glory Ride"

On their way to a small town off the Brittany coast after a fierce battle, Lt. Jeb Stuart spots a wild horse running along the shore. The Haunted Tank has been assigned to patrol the beach, blocking any attempt by the enemy to land troops on the coast. They stay at their post for days, but nothing happens and there is no sign of any enemy troops. Jeb decides to allow his men to go into town and relax, while he stays with the tank and continues to patrol the beach alone. Jeb spots even more wild horses running free on the beach, and asks his ancestor General J.E.B. Stuart what it was like to lead a cavalry charge during the Civil War. The General remembers a time during the Wilderness Campaign in 1864 when his cavalry were ambushed along the road by Union artillery. The General ordered his troops to mount up and charge at the cannons. Under the shower of deadly Union grapeshot, they bravely rode into the lines of Union soldiers. It was mad, but a pure, mad glory. Jeb is saddened that he will never experience anything like the General described, with their war fought impartially with cold, hard machines.

Jeb stops the tank, deciding to take a break on the beach before heading back into town for the others. He lies down in the sand, drifting off into a peaceful sleep. One of the wild horses, a beautiful white mare, trots up to him and nudges him on the head. It startles Jeb, and he leaps up. The horse runs away a safe distance, but Jeb is able to coax her back with an apple. Every day that Jeb returned to the beach, the horse was there waiting for him. One day, he finally gets up the nerve to try and mount her. The horse stays calm and allows Jeb to climb on. Jeb is a little unsteady riding bareback, but eventually gets the hang on it and the two gallop down the beach along the water. To Jeb's surprise, he finds further down the shore a Panzer tank hidden within the overgrowth and trees. The tank spots him, firing their machine gun at the lone soldier. He's able to keep ahead of the bullets, and then tells the horse to turn and ride into the tree line to draw the Panzer away from the town. The Panzer follows him, and Jeb rides as fast as he can until he reaches the embankment. He takes the horse over the edge, sliding down to safely land at the bottom. The tank goes over the edge after him, landing on its side and rupturing its fuel line bursting into flames. The sound of the tank exploding spooks the horse, and he throws Jeb off her back and runs away. Jeb can't blame her. General J.E.B. Stuart appears and tells his descendant that a mount that shares life and death with his rider will always remember him. As Jeb climbs back aboard the Haunted Tank, from the top of the embankment the white mare watches...

Notes

  • The events of the third story "Mekong Madness" happen immediately after the Bravos' last appearance in issue #267.

Trivia

  • No trivia.



See Also


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Links and References

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