508th Parachute Infantry enplaned in three lifts at LANGAR and FULBECK airfields, ENGLAND, at 1000 hour, 17 September 1944. The weather was cloudy with a ceiling of 1000 feet over the fields. The three lifts flew in low scattered clouds over ENGLAND, but broke into the clear when they reached the ENGLISH CHANNEL. After departure from ENGLAND the weather was clear and warm.
The flight reached the Dutch coast on schedule, and all check points to the DZ were crossed at the scheduled time. No enemy fighter opposition was encountered. Some scattered flak was encountered at the landfall on the Dutch coast. After leaving the coast of HOLLAND behind no more flak was encountered until fifteen minutes before drop time.
The last fifteen minutes of flight was made through intense light and† heavy flak. Machine gun, 20mm and 88mm fire was clearly visible.† Casualties among the parachutists from AA fire were light.
The regiment jumped in the following order - 1st Bn, 2nd Bn, 3rd Bn, on DZ "T", 2000 yards north of GROESBEEK, HOLLAND. 1st and 2nd Bn were dropped on the DZ. 3rd Bn was dropped 700 yards southeast of the DZ.† Lifts were bunched on the drop facilitating prompt assembly.
Initial enemy resistance on the DZ was negligible, amounting to fire from a few widely scattered AA crews and some isolated labor troops. Generally, the assembly was made without enemy interference.
Drop time was 1328 hour, 17 September 44. All units were 90 percent assembled and en route to objectives at 1500 hour. The 1st and 3rd Bns had captured their objectives by 1855 hour, 17 September 1944. The 2nd Bn met more determined resistance and was on its objective at 2030 hour, 17 September 44.
From this point on the action of each battalion constitutes a separate account and will be given below:
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