Pottawattamie County

S/Sgt. Richard Hickman




When an American soldier on the allied 5th army’s Anzio beachhead has to turn gopher, he invariably creates an underground home that is surprisingly comfortable although made of the simplest materials.

S. Sgt. Richard Hickman of Council Bluffs, Iowa, a member of the 3rd “Marine” Division is no exception.

The Iowan assisted some fellow non-coms in building an elaborate dugout.  They excavated a six-foot hole in the ground about eight feet square and lined the sides with sandbags.  For a roof a wooden framework was built and covered with additional sandbags.  Canvas cots provide comfortable sleeping accommodations for the men.  Candles provide illumination at night.  The entire job took the men three days to build.

Source:  Council Bluffs Nonpareil, May 8, 1944, p. 6