— Mark W. Clark
Context: The story I would like to tell, I thought then, is the story of the men who lie here. Nothing can blur my memory of their tenacity and devotion to duty, of their refusal to be awed by seemingly insurmountable odds, by the swirling dust of the Salerno, by the treacherous mud of the Liri Valley,, or by the stinging snows of the high Apennines. Some chapters of their story I could not hope to tell. No one could tell them who was not there day after day in the foxholes that filled with water before they were half dug, and on the rocky peaks where not even a pack mule could gain a footing. But I can tell a part of the story. I can tell how and why the turn of the wheel of war took the men of the Fifth Army to Italy and what was behind the orders that sent them into battle at Salerno, on the Volturno, at Cassino, and on the flat and barren little strip of hell known as the Anzio beachhead; and I can give at least a glimpse of the bravery and sacrifices, not only of the Americans but of dozen other nationalities who fought their way into the not-so-soft underbelly of the Axis. They are men who paid heavily for their page in history. Testimony to their courage is the fact that they won 56 of the 255 Congressional Medals of Honor awarded to our Army during the entire war. I am proud to have had an opportunity to share in their calculated risk in the Mediterranean.