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  • The answers to these, and many other questions...

    • Posted Apr 16, 2006 7:58 PM

      are available in my book, which can be yours for just $40 Canadian plus shipping.

      Just kidding of course...

      The Battalion jumped from two different types of aircraft on D-Day.

      C Company, the lead (Pathfinder if you will) company had the "honour" of jumping from the Armstrong Whitworth Albemarle, an out-of-date, converted bomber that had a capacity of 10 paratroopers (one stick). They were to capture and secure the drop zone for the remainder of the Battalion which would follow shortly after (approx. 45 minutes). The Albemarle had an elongated hole in the floor, which required the troopers to shuffle along on their bottoms before diving out head first. (There was not enough headroom to stand up). These aircraft were very difficult to jump from and as a result of this and the AA fire encounterd along the coast, the drop was scattered.

      The remainder of the Battalion jumped from Douglas C-47 Dakota's which had a capacity of 25 jumpers, but in most instances, only carried 20 as this would be considered two sticks. Although a much better aircraft for dropping paratroopers, the pilots encountered the same AA fire and again, the remainder of the Battalion was scattered here and there, some as far as 25 miles from the intended DZ.

      For Varsity, the entire Battalion went in on C-47s. There were a handful that went in by glider (Horsa, Hamilcar) with Jeeps, etc. and some that followed by land bringing the remaining Battalion vehicles.

      Hope this helps.

      Gary


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