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WC54 Truck, 3/4 ton, 4x4 Ambulance Dodge

The 3/4 ton WC-54 Ambulance was manufactured by Dodge from 1942 through 1945, with bodywork by Wayne. It superseded the WC-9 / WC-18 / WC-27 Truck, 1/2 ton, 4x4 Dodge Ambulance (G505).

WC-54 3/4 ton 4x4 ambulances ready to be shipped overseas, Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation, VA, 26 February 1943.
WC-54 3/4 ton 4x4 ambulances ready to be shipped overseas, Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation, VA, 26 February 1943.

Today in WW II: 24 Jul 1943 Start of the Battle of Hamburg [Operation Gomorrah], an eight day/night air campaign that destroyed large zones of the city by firestorm.  More 
24 Jul 1943 Gen. Patton's Seventh Army secures Palermo, Sicily.
24 Jul 1944 US forces land on Tinian.
Visit the Olive-Drab.com World War II Timeline for day-by-day events 1939-1945! See also WW2 Books.

WC-54 Truck, 3/4 ton, 4x4 Ambulance Dodge (G502)

The WC-54 Truck, 3/4 ton, 4x4 Ambulance Dodge (G502) had a crew of 2 and a capacity of 4 casualties on litters or 6 casualties seated. Its payload was 1,800 pounds. The 4x4 vehicle rode on 8-ply tires on 16 inch wheels. The engine was the Dodge T214, in common with the other G502 3/4 ton Dodge trucks. With a net weight of 5,920 pounds and a gross weight of 7,720 pounds, the truck's maximum speed was 54 miles per hour.

Logistics officers complained about the high cubeage of this vehicle. As a result, in 1944 the WC54 was cancelled and replaced with the WC64 KD with a box back made of flat panels that could be quickly disassembled (KD = "knock down"). These trucks were superceded in the 1950s by the Dodge M-43 ambulance of the M-37 3/4 ton truck series, after the Korean War.

Find additional photos and hi-res versions of the WC-54 3/4 ton Ambulance at the Olive-Drab Military Mashup:

Litter bearers putting casualty in WC-54 ambulance after carrying him from the mountains, Fifth Army, Mount Grande area, Italy, 21 February 1945. Medics are with the 1st Bn, Medical Section, 337th Infantry Regiment (Re-enacted).
Dodge WC-54 Truck, 3/4 ton, 4x4 Ambulances deliver wounded soldiers from the 1943-44 winter campaign to base hospitals in the Naples area. Until the fighting had advanced beyond Rome, the main Allied hospital area in Italy was in and around Naples. The trains have German and Italian cars with US locomotives.
US Army Signal Corps Dodge WC-54 Radio Truck, one of a few WC-54 Ambulances modified for this purpose.
Dodge WC-54 3/4 ton ambulance, waiting for debarkation of US wounded from Tunisia, Pier 5, Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation, Newport News, VA, 29 May 1943.
Two WC-54 3/4-ton 4x4 Dodge ambulances wait for a B-17 bomber to land at an English airfield, circa 1944.  The plane dropped two flares to indicate that it has wounded crew members aboard.
A pair of WC-54 3/4-ton 4x4 ambulances transport freed POWs from Los Banos prison camp for treatment and rehabilitation at the New Bilibid Prison facility, Muntinlupa City, Philippines, circa February 1945.

WC-54 3/4 ton Ambulance Photo Gallery

WC54 3/4 ton, 4x4 Dodge Ambulance at entrance to Pier 5, waiting for debarkation of wounded American soldiers from Tunisia, Newport News, VA, 29 May 1943.
WC54 3/4 ton, 4x4 Dodge Ambulance at entrance to Pier 5, waiting for debarkation of wounded American soldiers from Tunisia, Newport News, VA, 29 May 1943.

Medical Unit of the 25th Service Group training for the removal of wounded from a WC-54 ambulance, Greenville, South Carolina, July 1943.
Medical Unit of the 25th Service Group training for the removal of wounded from a WC-54 ambulance, Greenville, South Carolina, July 1943.

Newly produced Dodge WC-54 Ambulances waiting shipment from the Dodge factory during World War II, April, 1943.
Newly produced Dodge WC-54 Ambulances waiting shipment from the Dodge factory during World War II, April, 1943.

Storage field for newly produced Dodge WC-54 Ambulances waiting shipment from the Detroit, MI factory during World War II, August, 1942.
Storage field for newly produced Dodge WC-54 Ambulances waiting shipment from the Detroit, MI factory during World War II, August, 1942.

WC-54s arrive in France over the beach following D-Day, 1944.  Note the larger Red Cross symbol in use by 1944.
WC-54s arrive in France over the beach following D-Day, 1944. Note the larger Red Cross symbol in use by 1944.

Dodge WC-54 Ambulance at 4th Infantry Division Museum, Ft. Hood, TX, 2 December 2005. Photo: Courtesy of Bob Pettit.
Dodge WC-54 Ambulance at 4th Infantry Division Museum, Ft. Hood, TX, 2 December 2005. Photo: Courtesy of Bob Pettit.

WC-54 Truck, 3/4 ton, 4x4 Ambulance Dodge (G502)
WC-54 Truck, 3/4 ton, 4x4 Ambulance Dodge (G502). Photo: Courtesy of Jerry Ferguson.

Residue of WC-54 Ambulance used in the TV series M*A*S*H, based on the Korean War experiences of Mobile Army Surgical Hospital units.  When the show ended in 1983, the set of the fictional 4077 MASH unit location, including vehicles, were left in Malibu Creek State Park, Malibu, CA (formerly the 20th Century Fox Ranch) where the show was filmed.  A fire destroyed the tents and buildings, leaving only the WC-54 and a CJ jeep hulk which can still be found. Photo: Courtesy of C. Chriss, October 2005.
Residue of WC-54 Ambulance used in the TV series M*A*S*H, based on the Korean War experiences of Mobile Army Surgical Hospital units. When the show ended in 1983, the set of the fictional 4077 MASH unit location, including vehicles, were left in Malibu Creek State Park, Malibu, CA (formerly the 20th Century Fox Ranch) where the show was filmed. A fire destroyed the tents and buildings, leaving only the WC-54 and a CJ jeep hulk which can still be found. Photo: Courtesy of C. Chriss, October 2005. UPDATE: On 23 February 2008, a commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the last M*A*S*H episode was held at the set location. See the linked page for photos and description.

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