Includes six maps.
This is actual story of parent regiment of the famous “Band of Brothers” Easy company.
As the tens of thousands of American troops began their approach toward the forbidding German-defended Normandy coast, their comrades in the 82nd and 101st Airborne divisions had already flown over the Channel and began dropping and gliding into enemy territory. The Airborne Divisions had a role critical to the success of the entire Normandy Landings; beyond the initial beach landing areas were miles of flooded defended ditches and waterways. If the German troops managed to defend these bottlenecks the Americans on Utah Beach, at the extreme right of the operation, would be unable to move forward and might have foundered on the beach.
The capture and retention of the two southernmost exits were assigned to the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment; the plan was well thought-out and would have in all likelihood have succeeded handsomely. However the drop of the 506th like many of their comrades on D-Day was wide and scattered all across the Normandy landscape. As groups of paratroops nervously grouped together in the darkness they started small actions against whatever German positions that they came across; as officers and NCOs struggled to gain some control over the chaos the most organized moved toward their objectives. They bravely pushed forward toward their targets and held them against the rising numbers of German reinforcements; before the major link-up with the beach landings they fought and won the engagement at St-Mairie-Du-Comt against their toughest enemies, the German paratroops.
S L A Marshall, the Official Historian for the European Theatre of Operations, interviewed the men of the 506th on their return to the U.K. and from this collected material set about recording this story of their courage, dedication and fighting skill.