Monday, June 3, 2019
Dropping Into Normandy-- Part 5: It Was Like the 4th of July Only They Were Up There With the Fireworks
WILLIAM DUNFEE, 82nd-- "Then, looking down, I saw C-47s flying below us. That scared the hell out of me, and I started cussing them. I didn't want to be turned into hamburger by our own air force.... While descending, I regained my composure, since it appeared we were going to make it down in one piece."
CHARLES MILLER, 82nd-- It looked like a great big Fourth of July celebration. The whole sky was lit up like a big show."
ROY ZERBE, 101st-- "The sky was filled with fire, and it looked like the Fourth of July. I would guess we were low, at about 500 feet. I could see fires off in the distance."
GUY REMINGTON, 101st-- "The black Normandy pastures tilted and turned far beneath me. The first German flare came arching up, and instantly machine guns and forty-millimeter guns began firing from the corners of the fields, stripping the night with yellow, green, blue, and red tracers. I pitched through a wild Fourth of July.
"Fire licked through the sky and blazed around the transports heaving high overhead. I saw one of them go plunging down in flames. One of them came down with a trooper, whose chute had been caught in the tailpiece, streaming out behind. I heard a large gush of air: a man went hurtling past, only a few yards away, his parachute collapsed and burning.
"Other parachutes, with men whose legs had been shot off slumped in the harness, floated gently toward the earth."
Only, They Were Up There With the Fireworks This Time. --GreGen