On 16 December 1944 hundreds of panzers and thousands of troops poured forward as Hitler launched the last great German offensive of the war and, for once, the Allies were caught off guard. The thinly-held Ardennes was the last place they’d been expecting a counter-attack, but now three German armies were heading west across an 80-mile front.
The Americans rushed in reinforcements, including the 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions encamped near Reims, over a hundred miles away. After Operation Market Garden, they had moved to Reims to recuperate – they never got the chance. The 82nd immediately slowed the Germans’ advance to the north, whilst at Bastogne, a pivotal town further south, the 101st were surrounded, out-numbered and besieged, but refused to surrender. They held their positions and three days before Christmas the panzers ground to a halt, stalled by lack of fuel.
As the weather improved the Allies could now bring their immense air power into play. Hitler’s last gamble had failed.
Completed in oil paint on canvas, this magnificent painting portrays P-47 Thunderbolts of the 509th Fighter Squadron, 405th Fighter Group passing low over paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne Division, advancing through heavy snow during the Battle of the Bulge in early January 1945. Major Robert “Blackie” Blackburn, in his distinctive aircraft Chow Hound, leads his unit as they head out on a morning low-level bombing mission.
The original painting has been autographed on the reverse of the canvas by the following P-47 fighter pilots who flew in the Battle of the Bulge:
First Lieutenant EDWARD J. LOPEZ DFC PH
Colonel HERBERT L. PREVOST DFC
Captain WAYNE COLEMAN
The canvas is also signed by the following veterans from the two US Airborne Divisions who fought at Bastogne, together with renowned fighter pilot Wayne Coleman:
Private 1st Class ARTHUR “ART” PETERSEN
Private 1st Class SALVADOR “SAL” PEREZ
Staff Sergeant LOE A. DUMOUCHELLE
Captain DEAN MCCANDLESS
Original paintings by Anthony don’t often become available but we have recently acquired this outstanding piece giving serious collectors a great opportunity to own an original work.
THE LIMITED EDITION
This piece was also produced as a limited edition print, hand signed by the veterans that have signed the canvas – CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION