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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 It superseded the WC-9 / WC-18 / WC-27 Truck, 1/2 ton, 4x4 Dodge Ambulance (G505).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: 25 Nov 1941 Germans reach outskirts of Moscow but cannot sustain attack; Germans hold positions until Dec 5.  More 
25 Nov 1942 British SOE team and anti-Nazi Greeks blow up the Gorgopotamos railway viaduct, the first significant sabotage in occupied Europe [Operation Harling, Nov 25-26].
25 Nov 1943 Battle of Cape St. George between Buka and New Ireland, off Papua New Guinea, fought by US and Japanese naval forces.
25 Nov 1944 In Philippine waters, USS Intrepid [CV-11] hit by two Japanese kamikaze planes within five minute period, killing 69 and seriously wounding 85 of the crew.
25 Nov 1944 Most deadly German V-2 rocket attack in Britain happened at New Cross Road, destroying a Woolworths store and surrounding area, killing 160 people, seriously injuring 120 others.
25 Nov 1944 Japanese occupy Nanning, a transportation hub in south China, for the second time, in final stages of the Ichi-Go offensive.
25 Nov 1944 Last American airborne troops withdraw from unsuccessful Operation Market Garden positions.
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 These trucks were superceded in the 1950s by the Dodge M-43 ambulance of the M-37 3/4 ton truck series, after the Korean War.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:

German prisoners of war proceeding in column of twos from disinfestation plant, pier 6, under guard of the Military Police, Hampton Roads Port of Embarkation, Newport News, VA, 4 October 1943. From this point they marched to pier 4 to board trains which took them to various prisoner camps throughout the country.  WC-54 3/4-ton Dodge ambulance in upper left.
Although heavily riddled by enemy small arms and automatic weapons fire, an American WC-54 3/4-ton ambulance is used to evacuate United Nations casualties from a Korean battlefront, 6 October 1950.
The two flares (upper left) that this 8th AF Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress has just fired tell the waiting ambulance men that they must be ready when it lands to rush its wounded to the base hospital, England, circa 1944.  Ambulance is WC-54.
WC-54 3/4-ton 4x4 Dodge ambulances landing from LCT-550 on Normandy beach, France, 12 June 1944.  Unit: 546th Medical Ambulance Co.
Dodge WC-54 Ambulances line up to trasfer patients to aircraft, Hickam Field, Hawaii Territory, 1942.
Ambulances fording Reno River at Praduro, Italy, while traffic bound for front uses Bailey bridge (right).  These ambulances are WC54 Truck, 3/4 ton, 4x4 by Dodge.  Other vehicles on far bank.

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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