By August 1944, the Allies had broken out of Normandy, pushed the Germans back, and retaken Paris. However, the invasion had run out of steam and both sides were consolidated in central France. The Nazis were on the run but the German war machine was still strong. On August 27, 1944, five soldiers of the 1st Infantry Division had gathered at the tent used by Major Joseph Taylor as his HQ in a tiny, broken village in France. The five had volunteered for what had only been described to each of them as a “dangerous mission” behind enemy lines.
The 19-year-old Corporal Thomas Sawyer had a nickname of “Lefty” because he had been an amateur boxer in his hometown of Chicago, Illinois. He usually preferred the M1 Garand rifle. He had only been with the 1st Infantry since Normandy and was also trained in demolitions. Private First Class Norris Polk was from the hills of Tennessee. He was an excellent pistol shot and carried a .45 automatic as well as an M1 carbine. His first action with the 1st Infantry had been at Normandy. Private First Class Richard “Dick” Carter was from Philadelphia. He was usually armed with a .45 automatic pistol and a Thompson M1 sub-machinegun. He had served with the 1st Infantry since Sicily, having come up Italy with the Big Red One and been part of storming the beaches at Normandy as well. He was rated as a medic. Buck Private Syd Lafayette was a small, wiry New York City kid. A sniper, he preferred a Springfield M1903 rifle with a scope. He had served with the 1st Infantry since Italy and had been one of those who stormed the beaches of Normandy on D-Day. Finally among their number was Buck Private Bobby Smith, a solid young man with dark hair from Akron, Ohio. Rated as a medic, he also carried a Thompson M1 sub-machinegun and was a very solid youth. He had been the manager of a chain grocery store back home and had been with the 1st Infantry since Normandy.
They were to go behind enemy lines on a commando mission to blow up a bridge at exactly the right moment to keep an SS Panzer Unit from flanking the Allied forces.
On Nov. 28, 2011, I ran one of the introductory scenarios in the original Behind Enemy Lines boxed set for Stephen, Jeff, Eric, and Ken.
The journal entry for the game can be found here: http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/entry.php/1675-Behind-Enemy-Lines-11-28-2011