Lt. Col. Creighton Abrams (UBX32) with "Thunderbolt VI" and "Thunderbolt VII"

 

Creighton Williams “Abe” Abrams Jr. graduated from West Point in 1936 and joined the 1st Cavalry Division. In 1940 he gained the rank of Captain and took command of a tank company in the newly-formed 1st Armored Division. Leading up to the war, he was given command of the 37th Tank Battalion of the 4th Armored Division.

In the prewar months of 1941, Abrams focused on training his men. Even before his men received their first tanks, Abrams had his men take to the training field equipped with imaginary tanks. He instructed that the tank crews must stay together, with an arm on the next comrade’s shoulder, to simulate working together. In this way and others he fostered cooperation and trust between his men.

Abrams and the 37th Tank Battalion made landfall in France at Utah Beach in July 1944. During the fighting, Abrams led from the front and expected his staff to do the same. He removed a Sherman tank from each of his companies and gave them to his S-2 (intelligence), S-3 (operations) and liaison officers with orders to take command should company officers fall in combat.

During the first battles in the Lorraine, the Americans made very little headway trying to cross the well-defended Moselle River, but there was no stopping Abrams and his tankers. The 37th Tank Battalion sped to Arracourt, deep behind enemy lines where it clashed with the Germans’ own offensive. But Abrams’ aggressive leadership had tipped the balance in the Allies’ favour, earning him a Distinguished Service Cross.

After the Lorraine fighting, Abrams’ understrength battalion was assigned to Combat Command R (CCR) to rest and refit, but their break was rudely interrupted by the German offensive in the Ardennes. The 4th Armored packed up and sent its three combat commands north to try and break through to the embattled paratroopers in Bastonge.

After the other combat commands had made some headway toward Bastogne, CCR was called up to make the final push. Like in the Lorraine, Abrams pushed his men hard, drove through the Germans’ line, and met up with the besieged paratroopers on 26 December 1944. For his bold drive, he was awarded another Distinguished Service Cross.

Abrams continued to command the 37th Tank Battalion until he was promoted to Colonel in 1945. Under his leadership the 37th had gained the reputation as being the best tank outfit in the US Army. For his service Abrams was awarded two Distinguished Service Crosses, two Silver Stars, the Legion of Merit, the British Distinguished Service Order, and the French Legion D’Honneur.

After WWII, Abrams went on to command all US forces in Vietnam and was later appointed the Chief of Staff of the United States Army. An avid lover of cigars, Abrams died of lung cancer in 1974. In honour of his legacy as a tanker, the modern M1 Abrams main battle tank was named after him.

In a rare fit of humility, General Patton once said, “I’m supposed to be the best tank commander in the Army, but I have one peer - Abe Abrams.”

 

Thunderbolt VII in Flames Of War
      Armour    
Name Mobility Front Side Top Equipment and Notes
Weapon Range ROF Anti-tank Firepower  
M4A3E8 "Thunderbolt VII" Standard Tank

8

5 1 Co-ax MG, Hull MG, AA MG, .50 cal AA MG, Protected ammo, Smooth Ride, Tank telephone, Wide tracks.
M1 76mm gun (late) 32"/80cm 2 13 3+ Stabiliser.

 

Thunderbolt VI in Flames Of War

      Armour    
Name Mobility Front Side Top Equipment and Notes
Weapon Range ROF Anti-tank Firepower  
M4A3 (76mm) "Thunderbolt VI" Standard Tank

7

4 1 Co-ax MG, Hull MG, .50 cal AA MG, Detroit's finest, Protected ammo, Smooth Ride, Tank telephone, Wide tracks.
M1 76mm gun (late) 32"/80cm 2 13 3+ Stabiliser.

 

Contents


  • One M4A3 (76mm) "Thunderbolt VI"
  • One M4A3E8 "Thunderbolt VII"
  • Two L. Col. Creighton Abrams tank commander figures
  • One plastic Sherman sprue
  • Decal sheet
 

(20096)

SKU 20096
Barcode # 9420020219892

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