Aspects of the event
Major Pittard's record of the fighting near Massa Marittima seems more detailed and reliable than that in "Tigers in Combat 1". He states that Combat Command B of the 1st Armored Division began fighting west of Gavoranno on the 22nd June 1944, and advanced north on Strade Provinciale Collacchia on the 23rd. Passing over a rise, they found themselves facing "nine Mark VI ( Tiger tanks)" and knocked out several. The next morning they flanked the Germans and used artillery to "destroy three more". The 504th then withdrew.
"Tigers in Combat 1" states that only two Tigers were left behind in this retreat, and we have photos of those two. But Tiger "222" was also abandoned directly in the path of the advancing Americans. Either it was not compiled in the book, or it was mistakenly included in the three lost Tigers listed for 25th June.
Photos of the abandoned "222" show signs of deliberate destruction. The Tiger is stopped on a road, facing North, away from the enemy. There is a penetration in the turret hatch, possibly caused by the advancing Americans firing on the suspicious wreck from behind. Ammunition stored beside the driver has exploded, but no penetrations at the front are visible.
Whatever happened, we can safely say that Tiger "222" was lost in battle with the 1st Armored Division, on 23-24 June 1944.
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