The 2662 Mountain Training Detachment was originally ordered to Africa where they were to join the British Mountain Warfare School in Lebanon
Sorensen: "We made the jump over the big pond in eight hours and landed in Dakar. Here we had quite a wait before going north, but enjoyed a wonderful beach with playing and swimming and getting a suntan every day. The flight over the Sahara Desert was impressive. In Algiers we had quite a wait as the British Mountain School in Lebanon, which we were to join, had closed when the desert drive was over. Captain Burton arranged a ski meet, sponsored by the Stars and Strips. We took off in a six by six and finally arrived at a French winter resort above Bilda in the Atlas mountains. The snow conditions and the equipment were poor and we had quite a time skiing with G.I. shoes, ash skis with leather bindings, trying to dodge flags, rocks and grass and keep the skis going in the right direction. It was a sight for sore eyes to see Gordy Wren racing down in his customary flashy way to win the race. Finally orders came and we hopped over to Naples to join the newly formed British Mountain School at Sepino."
Broomhall: "On Dec 14th 1943 we left to join a British Mountain Warfare School in Lebanon. We flew from Miami to Natal Brazil where we spent Christmas. We flew from Brazil to a small town South of Dakar where we were stuck waiting for a flight. Finally we reached Algiers only to find that the Lebanon School had folded, but was opening again in Sepino Italy."
While speaking with Matthew Galaher in May of 2002, Dave Conger remembered they were stuck in Dakar for some days awaiting transport and ultimately rode in the bomb bay of a Bomber to Algiers.
Conger went on to explain that as he remembers it, the trip to the Atlas Mountains outside of Algiers was a day excursion. Their was some snow but certainly not much. Someone had a pair of skis, and Mr. Conger remembers Gordy Wren putting them on taking a short run and then using his ski poles as support doing a flip with his skis on, much to the amusement of the locals. Conger noted that Gordy Wren was a born athlete and that Gordon and Freddy Pieren were by far and away the best skiers of the group and in a class of their own. The group had lunch up there and then returned to their hotel in Algiers.
Still more can be found on the 2662 Detachment in Africa here.
NORTH AFRICAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS
UNITED STATES ARMY
|AG-200.4/004-P||30 August 1944|
TO: All Concerned
|CAPTAIN HAZEL E. LINK||0452420||CAV|
|2ND LT HAROLD B. BURTON||01317616||CAV|
|2ND LT GORDON K. PATTERSON||01291687||INF|
|2ND LT ROBERT K. WELDON||01299502||INF|
|2ND LT JOHN CLEMENT||01316013||INF|
|Tec Sgt Peter E. Pringsheim||32090743|
|S/Sgt||Gordon L. Wren||37329618|
|S/Sgt||Eldon C. Metzger||39300716|
|S/Sgt||Harold G. Sorensen||32057860|
|S/Sgt||Robert B. Galaher||31025980|
|S/Sgt||Herbert J. Rasor||39300309|
|Sgt||Alfred H. Corbett||39325387|
|Tec 4||Clifford Schmidtke||39203381|
|Tec 4||Alfred Pieren||39125313|
|Tec 4||Jack T. Kappler||19193406|
|Cpl||John H. Lawson||11042844|
|Cpl||Paul E. Duke||12063066|
|Cpl||Carlton E. Blanchard||11049376|
|Cpl||David E. Conger||19115491|
|R. H. JACKMAN,
Asst. Adj. Gen.
|AC of S G-3 AFH||1|
|AC of S G-1||1|
|CO 7th Repl Dep||2|
|Dr of Mil Tng Br||2|
|Central Med Tng Center BR||2|
|CG Repl Comd||1|