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The 1er Régiment de Fusiliers Marins 1er RFM French ( 1er RFM, or first regiment of Fusiliers Marins) was a unit of the Free French Navy during the campaign of Italy, then in the campaign of France.

1er Régiment de Fusiliers Marins
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ActiveSeptember 24, 1943 – August 1945
CountryFrance Flag of France.svg
AllegianceGénéral de Lattre de Tassigny
BranchFrench Navy
Fusiliers Marins
TypeArmoured Regiment
Part of1st French Army or 1st Free French Division 1re DFL
EquipmentLight Tank
EngagementsWorld War II
Commanders
Ceremonial chiefNaval Corvette captain Pierre de Morsier
Colonel of
the Regiment
Naval Ship-of-the-line captain Hubert Amyot d'Inville  

Contents

CreationEdit

On September 24, 1943, the Fusiliers Marins Battalion increased effectifs by integrating volunteers from the naval corps present in North Africa (French: marine d'Afrique du Nord) ( particularly radio and mechanic specialists), accordingly being designated as 1er Régiment de fusiliers marins (1er RFM), an armored reconnaissance unit of the 1st Free French Division 1er DFL. Command was entrusted to naval Corvette captain Hubert Amyot d'Inville. The regiment was equipped with U.S. American equipment, notably the M24 Chaffee.

CampaignsEdit

ItalyEdit

Following a trained supported phase, the 1er RFM disembarked in Naples at the corps of the 1er DFL, on April 22, 1944. Since May 12, the regiment engaged in intense combats on Garigliano. While bearing the forefront of the division on three axes, the RFM led combats at Montefiascone and Radicofani. The regiment counted 61 killed out of which Amyot d'Inville and 140 wounded.

ProvenceEdit

At the end of World War II, the regiment was disembarked in Provence, at Cavalaire-sur-Mer, under the command of Corvette captain Pierre de Morsier.

The unit combatted for the liberation of Toulon and Hyères, then reclimbed through the valley of the Rhône, penetrated in Lyon, then reached Autun; the Savary squadron entered following a hard confrontation during which five men were killed and four were wounded. Savary done, in Côte d'Or, the liaison were assumed with units of the 2e DB (Leclerc) which disembarked in Normandy. The RFM pursues the respective advancement in direction of the Vosgues.

Vallée du RhôneEdit

The regiment conducted the juncture with the 1st Spahi Regiment (Normandy landings with the 2e DB) at Châtillon-sur-Seine on September 12. This juncture is considered as one the junctures between Allied troops of Normandy and those of Provence.

Haute-SaôneEdit

On September 27, the tank squadron led the attack on Clairegoutte before apprehending Ronchamp on October 8, then Vescemont, Rougegoutte, Romagny and Rougemont-le-Château the following month. Distinguished particularly in the following operations: Vessel Ensign Bokanowski, Aspirant Vasseur and, alongside the sailors, the men of the 11th Cuir-Vercors (French: 11e Cuir-Vercors) placed under the orders of the 1er RFM.

Battle of the Royan pocketEdit

Following the campaign in the Vosges, the 1re DFL was sent to the Atlantic front to reduce the Royan pocket and Grave cap (French: poche de Royan), however was it recalled urgently on the eastern front due to a German offensive launched in December 1944 in Alsace.

AlsaceEdit

In January 1945, the fusiliers marins distinguished themselves again in Alsace, at Herbsheim and Rossfeld, before pursuing their march towards the Rhin.

AlpesEdit

Retrieved from the Alsace front, the division was assigned to the detachment of the Army of the Alps (French: armée des Alpes) in April 1945, in the massif of Authion, where the 1st squadron fought with distinction, enduring the loss in the offensive of five officers out of six and nearly 50% of its forces that were engaged.

TraditionsEdit

Ordre de la libérationEdit

The mechanic sailor Georges Brières, killed at Giromagny, rests in the Mémorial de la France combattante. Brières represents the sacrifice of all sailors lost for the Liberation of France.

Regimental ColorsEdit

The regimental colors, memory and tradition of the 1er Régiment de fusiliers marins are confined to the fusiliers school. With the Naval leadership of the Régiment Blindé de Fusiliers-Marins RBFM of the French Navy which was not part of the Free French Forces FFL, nor part of the Free French Naval Forces FNFL, the Naval leadership of the 1er Régiment de Fusiliers Marins showcased the valor of French arms.

Regiment combat casualtiesEdit

Between October 1940 and May 1945, the ensemble of the 1er BFM/ 1e RFM endured the loss of 195 men amongst them 12 officers out of which 2 commandants.

DecorationsEdit

Awarded to the men of this regiment:

The regimental colors of the 1er RFM was awarded 5 citations at the orders of the armed forces obtained for 1939-1945 with attribution of the croix de la Libération, the médaille de la Résistance française and la croix de guerre.

In August 1945, the 1er RFM was reassigned at the disposition of Naval authorities.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit