Aidmen in Italy

Time for another photo analysis. I believe this photo was taken from an online Army publication regarding the medical program.

Aidmen unloading wounded at batallion aid station in Italy

Aidmen unloading wounded at batallion aid station in Italy

Aidmen in Italy - number key in post

Aidmen in Italy - number key in post

  1. The caption simply states that the photo was taken in Italy. Italy’s a big place, I wonder what town this is.
  2. Trailer loaded down with canvas-type stuff
  3. Ambulance flag (there’s also one in the background). If you need to purchase one, med-dept has them for sale
  4. I’m not a WWII vehicle buff, so I have no idea what type of vehicle this is. It’s not the hard-sided ambulance that seems to be a little further down the row. Ideas?
  5. I have one of two guesses. First, these are welded strips of metal that are used to support an over-the-hood stretcher rack. Second, they are canvas straps used to keep the windshield tied down.
  6. It looks like this guy’s brassard is either painted on, or otherwise irregular. Notice the white field is in a circular shape. The driver is also not wearing a traditional brassard
  7. Over-the-jeep stretcher rack.
  8. It appears that this is another stretcher spread across the hood
  9. The pioneering tools on this jeep were jettisoned likely because they interfered with the overhead rack
  10. Since we’re keeping track of helmet markings, this GI appears to be using the red on white circle with the red cross extending to the edges. There are at least 3 markings.
  11. As a passenger, I’ll frequently put one leg outside the jeep, but I can’t imagine doing this as a driver. How does he clutch? Or perhaps he’s just getting ready to jump out quick since it appears he’s turning into a parking area. Anyone ever driven a like this?
  12. This guy appears to have some neat looking facial hair. Combined with the helmet pulled down, it’s very dark and mysterious. I’m sure it was the look he was after.


  • Tobias says:

    I dont think he is “driving” the jeep. it looks like the other guys are pushing it. Therefore not having the foot on the pedal..?

  • Al Sims says:

    My guess on #4 is that it’s a trailer with a canopy top to keep the weather out. Such a trailer pulled behind a vehicle could carry more wounded.

    #10 Medical helmets were regular helmets painted by the medics themselves so vary quite a lot from army painted ones. I’ve even seen helmet liners painted with the medical crosses for wear in non hostile zones to get rid of the heavy steel helmet.

    • Paul says:

      If you look at the length of the top, and the small strap just forward of the Red Cross, it’s the giveaway that its a Dodge WC51/52 3/4 ton weapons carrier. After I got my ’42 GPW in my “invincible” early twenties, I did drive it a FEW times like that – its an incredibly risky and boneheaded thing to do and should be kept to the passenger side.

  • Anthony says:

    The metal H frame on this willys jeep are for stretchers two can be carried on top. the support frame on the bonnet is for one more to be carried across the Bonnet . Aid flag oppional . helmit markings. can be three on a helmit or one aid mark on front of helmit this to up to individual. some of the H frames were made of wood..some jeeps carried just two across the back of jeep ! with aidman (to care for patient)