René’s journal entry for June 22, 1943…



            June 22, we left at 6:25 A.M., and this was our shortest day, for we only traveled 205 miles, having gone 239 miles the second day. The reason we stopped early (4:40PM) this day was that we had some tough hills on the next stretch and we didn’t want to be too tired. We were ahead of schedule and a lighter day was welcomed by some. We stopped at a place called Affreville. What a place!

            The bivouac area was in what was apparently an Arab marketplace – there was water, not drinking water, and plenty of bloomin Arab urchins around. We had quite a time keeping them away. We were right next to a French garrison of native troops and some of the troops came over and visited, and we carried on quite a conversation with some of them. They were spellbound when Peter turned on his radio, and it was all we could do to get them to leave when we wanted to go to sleep. We had to do it politely, so with our meager French, it was plenty difficult. However, we finally got to bed – this time I slept in the truck and Roy slept on top of the trailer. The truck was very comfortable, I found.

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Watch for my next message on
June 23

Click on map to enlarge
Day 3 – Sidi Bel Abbes to Affreville (now Khemis Miliana), Algeria
6:25AM to 4:40PM
Cohn’s Courageous Commandos traveled 205 miles

While they were bivouaced at Affreville (now Khemis Miliana, Algeria), troops from the French garrison nearby came over for a visit. René notes that “they were spellbound when Peter turned on his radio.”