101st Airborne at Bastogne
Screen colors may vary from print colors
Print Size: 31" x 19"
All prints are sold unframed

Hold Fast
December 24, 1944 - Bastogne, Belgium

a fine art print by James Dietz

Just two days prior, the German forces had demanded the surrender of the 101st Airborne, threatening them with “total annihilation.” In reply came the answer: “Nuts!”

Now, another German attack comes, on a frigid morning, the day before Christmas. From the tree line of the Bois Jacques, the Screaming Eagles respond with thunderous firepower and a battle cry—“Hold fast!”

At this crucial hour, these young men will give their country the most memorable Christmas gift of all: Victory. Two days later, on December 26, the German siege will be broken and the battle for Bastogne will be won.

Only 190 prints, signed and numbered by
James Dietz and 7 veterans including:

- Easy Company officer Buck Compton!
- Easy Company Sergeant "Wild Bill" Guarnere!
- Easy Company Medic Al Mampre!
- First time signer, commando & 101st vet Bert Winzer!
- Plus three more signers from our list below!

INCLUDES:
Color COA with "History Behind the Art" story

All prints are sold unframed

INTERNATIONAL:
$295 + $60 Priority
Mail
USA: $295 + $25 SH
CO residents add 4% tax

Only 200 prints, signed and numbered by James Dietz
& 2 veterans of Bastogne including:

- Easy Company Sergeant Rod Strohl!
-
1st time signer, commando & 101st vet Bert Winzer!

INCLUDES:
Color COA with "History Behind the Art" story

All prints are sold unframed

INTERNATIONAL:
$175 + $60 Priority
Mail
USA: $175 + $25 SH
CO residents add 4% tax
SOLD OUT
Contact us for secondary market availability

Only 180 prints, signed and numbered by
James Dietz & 12 veterans including:

- Easy Company officer Buck Compton!
- Easy Company Sergeants Don Malarkey
& "Wild Bill" Guarnere!
- Easy Company scout Earl McClung (depicted)!
- 1st time signer, Bastogne defender John Primerano!
- 1st time signer, commando & 101st vet Bert Winzer!
- Plus six more veterans from our list below!

INCLUDES:
Color COA with "History Behind the Art" story

All prints are sold unframed

A canvas giclee edition may be made available by Valor Studios in the future. A Signer Proof edition of 100 prints exists for print signers.
An Artist Proof edition of 150 prints bearing only the artist's signature, and a Gallery edition of 100 prints bearing only the artist's signature, are available via the artist and his publisher.
On December 2004, during the 60th anniversary celebration of the Battle of the Bulge, we found ourselves in the Bois Jacques forrest (Jack's Woods), north of Bastogne, with 101st Airborne paratroopers Earl McClung and Shifty Powers.

As our boots crunched a thin veil of fresh snow, Earl and Shifty shared their memories of the first German assault that Easy Company faced during the battle for Bastogne, a fight that took place on the morning of Christmas Eve, and one that we vowed to some day commemorate in art.

you'll see Gordon being pulled away into the trees where he'll be treated by Doc Roe and evacuated. Above the machine gunners, First Sergeant Carwood Lipton directs the return fire. In the foreground, Shifty Powers quickly reloads another clip into his M1.

In the background, Earl McClung and Buck Taylor launch an assault of their own, to outflank the enemy. They will soon cross the road and in close quarters fighting will eliminate several enemy soldiers, including the sniper that shot Gordon. For McClung, the encounter will be a close call with death; he'll be spared when a German gunner's

 

Shifty and Earl would explain that their third platoon was dug in at the tree line, looking out across a small field that was bisected by the Foy-Bizory road. The battle began that morning with a single shot by a German sniper that struck Walter Gordon as he brewed a cup of coffee. The attack quickly intensified with enemy mortar and artillery fire followed by an infantry assault by soldiers of the 26th Volksgrenadier Division and 2nd Panzer Division.

It is this moment that Jim Dietz, America's preeminent combat artist, has masterfully recreated. On the far right,

submachine gun bolt jams from the cold.

In the end, Easy Company would triumph in this fight, holding fast and stopping cold the German advance towards Bastogne.

When the battle was over, Sgt. Lipton would walk the line and count 38 dead German soldiers, a testament to the furious fighting and lethality of the Screaming Eagles.

   
Clancy Lyall
Easy Company
506th P.I.R.
Don Malarkey
Easy Company
506th P.I.R.
Al Mampre
Easy Company
506th P.I.R.

Buck Compton
Easy Company
506th P.I.R.

Bradford
Freeman

Easy Company
506th P.I.R.
"Wild Bill" Guarnere
Easy Company
506th P.I.R.

Jim
"Pee Wee"
Martin
George Co.
506th P.I.R.

NEW SIGNER!
John Primerano

Headquarters
501st P.I.R.
Earl McClung
Easy Company
506th P.I.R.
Bob Noody
Fox Company
506th P.I.R.
Phi Perugini
Easy Company
506th P.I.R.
Rod Strohl
Easy Company
506th P.I.R.
Representing the Troop Carrier pilots who kept the Screaming Eagles supplied during the siege of Bastogne:
Ed Tipper
Easy Company
506th P.I.R.
NEW SIGNER!
Bert Winzer

George Co.
501st P.I.R.
Fred Trenck
C-47 pilot
441st TCG
ELITE COMMANDO & 101ST TROOPER
BERTRAM WINZER

Bert entered the Army in 1942 and volunteered to join America's (and Canada's) most elite group of para-commandos, the First Special Service Force – or simply “The Force”– the same unit depicted in the 1968 movie “The Devil's Brigade.”

In July 1943, Bert left with The Force for Alaska where he participated in the Aleutian Islands Campaign. Following the Aleutians, Bert and The Force deployed to the Italian campaign and subsequently fought in the battles for Naples-Foggia, Anzio, and Rome.

At Anzio, Bert often went behind enemy lines on reconnaissance patrols meant to terrorize the enemy that earned the The Force the nickname, “the black devils.”

Following the Italian campaign, Bert and The Force fought in the invasion of southern France and in the Franco-Italian border area where he was wounded by shrapnel.

On December 5th, The Force was disbanded and Bert was transferred to the 101st Airborne's 501st Regiment just in time to deploy with the division to the defense of Bastogne where Bert fought as a M1 rifleman on the line in G-Company.

In 2015, Bert was honored at the national capital when the First Special Service Force received the Congressional Gold Medal.

_501st Paratrooper
JOHN PRIMERANO
21 year old John Primerano was part of the Regimental Headquarters, of the 501st PIR, when prior to D-Day, he helped construct the sand tables used to prepare his regiment for the jump. As a result, he was not allowed to jump on D-Day but made his first combat jump during Market Garden.

During the siege of Bastogne, John was stationed in town, across from Saint Peter's Church. Following the loss of a close friend during the battle, John was at the breaking point. He recalled: “My hands were shaking and I no longer had the energy to carry on.” So during an enemy artillery barrage on the town, he made for the church.

Upon entering, John felt like “I’d stepped into some sort of vacuum” as the church was silent. “I sat down and took my helmet off. I was sweating. Lying on the floor next to me was this big wooden crucifix that had been blown off the wall and the roof had been punctured . . . suddenly a shaft of intense sunlight came streaming through one of the holes in the ceiling! The beam completely lit up the crucifix! Alone in that church, suddenly I became acutely aware of a warm sensation that I can only describe as a loving embrace followed by a soft voice whispering ‘Don’t worry son…you’ll be fine!’”

All fear and worry left John at that moment and as he remembered, “I knew I was going to make it.”

In 2012 John returned to the church and with the help of guide Reg Jans, found the crucifix tucked away in a side room. Then and there he broke into tears at the sight of the cross.“I never imagined that I’d ever see it again…back then, this cross actually changed my life,” John recalled. Before leaving, he lit a candle in memory of his fallen Screaming Eagles, a tradition he continues to this day.

JAMES DIETZ

Jim Dietz has gained international recognition in aviation, military and automotive art circles for his unique approach to these genres. "The people, settings and costumes are what make early 20th Century history exciting and romantic to me."

It is this feeling that makes Jim Dietz and his artwork so different from his contemporaries. Rather than simply illustrate hardware, Jim prefers to portray human involvement, to show in his paintings the interaction between man and machine-after all, he says, "it is the people who make machines great-by design, by operation and by dedication."

A native of San Francisco, Jim graduated from Art Center College of Design in 1969 and began a successful illustration career. In 1978, Jim and his wife to move to Seattle where he began to fulfill his dream of specializing in historical aviation, automotive and military art. His clients have included everyone from Boeing to the Army's Delta Force.

Jim still lives in Seattle, with his wife, Patti, son, lan and his Australian Shepherd, Tazzy, who is seen often in Jim's paintings. His studio resembles a World War I aviator's bar, filled with flying and automotive memorabilia, wooden props and model airplanes.

Valor Studios wishes to thank the following for their assistance with this project:
Battle of the Bulge researcher Reg Jans and the distinguished veterans who made this print possible.