BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The Battle of the Bulge was fought again, 70 years after the first battle cost 19,000 American lives in the largest and bloodiest battle fought by the United States in World War II.
In Saturday's battle at Beauvoir, there were no lives lost, but the participants gained appreciation on both sides of the battle field.
About 50 re-enactors fought out the battle on Beauvoir's battlefield. They represented German and American units that originally fought during a German surprise attack on the European western front.
Seven year reenactment participant James Halliday of Gulfport, a veteran himself, played a German solider from the 116th Panzer unit. His son, Bailey, also played a German soldier.
The wide age range represents the Germany Army in 1944 and 1945, which had suffered a dramatic loss of manpower.
Despite the crippled forces, the Germans surprised the Americans.
"Americans were overwhelmed but fighting in small units, held out and stopped the war turning at that point in Germany's favor," Halliday said. "It honors the fighting man and the fighting spirit."
Bailey is 14. This was his first battle, and it made an impression.
"You can read it in a book about history, but actually being out there and participating in realistic battles, it really puts things into perspective," said Bailey.
The organizer of the first time event is Adam Williams, a volunteer at the World War II Museum in New Orleans for 15 years.
"I've always been a World War II buff," Williams said. "My father and grandfather were World War II veterans. My mother was a Vietnam flight nurse. I grew up in a military family. I do this to honor my dad and my grandpa and all the veterans."