82nd Airborne Division Blog

In this section we talk about people and events of the 82nd in WWII - the known and hopefully lots of the previously unknown. If you have something to add, we would love to hear it. You can enter your comments at the bottom of each story.

Captain George Simonds, 508th PIR

Captain George Simonds, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, died attacking Hill 95 in Normandy on July 4th, 1944. His final resting place is San Jose, California.

Sergeant Victor Schmidt, 505th PIR

Sergeant Victor Schmidt of the 505 spoke fluent German. This came in handy in Normandy and several other times.

Colonel Krause goes hunting for Mac

Colonel Krause searches among a lineup of men named “Mac” to find the one that hit him over the head with a piece of wood.

504 in Italy – Corporal Ross Carter

After the 82nd Airborne Division jumped in Italy on the Salerno beachhead and fought their way up to Naples, the 504 stayed and fought after the rest of the division moved to Ireland to prepare for D-Day. Corporal Ross Carter describes the situation.
After months of brutal fighting, the 504 would not have time to absorb replacements and participate in the cross-channel invasion.

Sergeant Alvin C. York

Sergeant Alvin C. York earned the Congressional Medal of Honor with the 82nd Infantry Division in WWI. The division was deactivated between the wars and was then brought back in 1942 as America’s first airborne division.

Slit vs. Straddle Trench

Slit trench vs. Straddle trench. Where should one take cover?

Brutal North African conditions

The 82nd Airborne spent months training in the unforgiving conditions of Oujda, Morocco and Kairouan, Tunisia leading up the invasion of Sicily. WWII 1943.

Henry Bly saves a British lass

Paratrooper Henry Bly came to the rescue and prevented a British girl from being raped.

Dick Garber, jumpmaster for Ridgway

Lieutenant Dick Garber is the jumpmaster for General Matthew B. Ridgway on D-Day morning. The pressure is on to put the general in the right spot.

Doc Franco

Robert “Doc” Franco of the 505