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Old January 15, 2021, 09:50 AM   #26
603Country
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This might not be precisely on topic, but you might find it interesting. I had an older friend (ex-Marine, like me) that hated the M14 and thought it was junk next to his beloved M1. And I met his old (real old) First Sergeant that thought that the M1 was junk next to his beloved 03A3.
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Old January 15, 2021, 10:15 AM   #27
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I think it is also important to remember that the whole idea of jumping out of a perfectly good airplane into a battle was something that was still very new. This was 1944. The first experimental paratroop drop was the late 1920s and it wasn't seriously done until the mid 1930s. Techniques were still very much evolving at that point.
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Old January 15, 2021, 11:36 AM   #28
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Just learned the paratrooper survived captivity and remained in the service and retired as a SMJ. He passed away in 2014.
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Old January 15, 2021, 12:43 PM   #29
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This might not be precisely on topic, but you might find it interesting. I had an older friend (ex-Marine, like me) that hated the M14 and thought it was junk next to his beloved M1. And I met his old (real old) First Sergeant that thought that the M1 was junk next to his beloved 03A3.
The 1st Marine was recruiting at Tun Tavern. A fellow comes up and asks him what this is all about? "The New Marine Corps! Bring your own rifle and you can be one of the few and the proud!". The fellow replies "That sounds good to me, I got my rifle right here, sign me up" The Marine signs him up and sends him to wait in the tavern.

A little while later another guy comes in and says he signed up as well. The 2nd Marine asks him where his rifle is? "Well, I told the guy I didn't have a rifle, but I wanted to join. He told me they would find me one and signed me up"

The 2nd Marine grumbled "This sure isn't like the old corps!"
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Old January 15, 2021, 02:47 PM   #30
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I think it is also important to remember that the whole idea of jumping out of a perfectly good airplane into a battle was something that was still very new. This was 1944. The first experimental paratroop drop was the late 1920s and it wasn't seriously done until the mid 1930s. Techniques were still very much evolving at that point.
I asked a buddy who was an Airborne Ranger in the '80s, and he said they never left the airplane with anything in their hands; live and learn.
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Old January 15, 2021, 03:55 PM   #31
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I asked a buddy who was an Airborne Ranger in the '80s, and he said they never left the airplane with anything in their hands; live and learn.
No control of risers (and direction) if you can't use your hands. That's why the original statement puzzles me. I can see it if it was in a case strapped to him and he unstrapped it.
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Old January 15, 2021, 07:59 PM   #32
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No control of risers (and direction) if you can't use your hands. That's why the original statement puzzles me. I can see it if it was in a case strapped to him and he unstrapped it.
It is a puzzling statement indeed.

Don't forget, memory is a funny thing. It's not the video recorder that we would like it to be. This man jumped from a burning plane into horrific war. It's quite possible he misremembered some of the details.

People have been known to be adamant about specific things they remember, that never happened. Especially when under stress.
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Old Yesterday, 03:35 PM   #33
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Been scouring footage, have not found much in the way of anything showing a rifle in a paratrooper's hands, but I did find what I think is a rifle falling during a jump.

it is at 4:22 - 4:25, the object falls down the left edge of the video.

Looks more like a rifle when the video is playing than it does in the screen-grab.

https://youtu.be/8oLd5Er9wno
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 82nd2.jpg (28.1 KB, 20 views)

Last edited by rickyrick; Yesterday at 04:28 PM.
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Old Yesterday, 07:48 PM   #34
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You quoted the author as saying:
"The Air Force sergeant dove out the door of the plane."
In 1944 there were no Air Force sergeants because there was no Air Force.
I am also suspicious of someone who claims they jumped with a rifle in their hands,
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Old Yesterday, 09:17 PM   #35
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In the early 60s I worked with several WWII pars vets. One, Floyd Loveland, made all 3 WWII para assaults. Jumps were made from 250 to 500 feet. The 24' reserve required 250' min altitude to open and safely slow the parachutist. Because of this, some declined to use the reserve, prefering to have a "clean" front. There is adequate evidence that many troops were dropped too low for their parachutes to work.

Some paras secured or carried their weapon on their front or slung muzzle down until they cleared the door, then unslung ready to go to work.

The 28' flat circular T5 parachute had a much stronger opening shock than the 34' parabolic T10 or S-ll or the new T11 "square" static line parachutes.

No doubt in my military mind, the WWII paras were tough.
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Old Yesterday, 09:18 PM   #36
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In the early 60s I worked with several WWII pars vets. One, Floyd Loveland, made all 3 WWII para assaults. Jumps were made from 250 to 500 feet. The 24' reserve required 250' min altitude to open and safely slow the parachutist. Because of this, some declined to use the reserve, prefering to have a "clean" front. There is adequate evidence that many troops were dropped too low for their parachutes to work.

Some paras secured or carried their weapon on their front or slung muzzle down until they cleared the door, then unslung ready to go to work.

The 28' flat circular T5 parachute had a much stronger opening shock than the 34' parabolic T10 or S-ll or the new T11 "square" static line parachutes.

No doubt in my military mind, the WWII paras were tough.
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