By James Megellas
In mid-1943 James Megellas, referred to as “Maggie” to his fellow paratroopers, joined the 82d Airborne department, his new “home” for the length. His first flavor of wrestle used to be within the rugged mountains outdoor Naples.
In October 1943, whilst many of the 82d departed Italy to arrange for the D-Day invasion of France, Lt. Gen. Mark Clark, the 5th military commander, asked that the division’s 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, Maggie’s outfit, remain at the back of for a bold new operation that will outflank the Nazis’ obdurate shielding strains and open the line to Rome. On 22 January 1944, Megellas and the remainder of the 504th landed around the seashore at Anzio. Following preliminary good fortune, 5th Army’s amphibious attack, Operation Shingle, slowed down within the face of heavy German counterattacks that threatened to force the Allies into the Tyrrhenian Sea. Anzio changed into a fiasco, one of many bloodiest Allied operations of the struggle. now not till April have been the remnants of the regiment withdrawn and shipped to England to get better, reorganize, refit, and educate for his or her subsequent mission.
In September, Megellas parachuted into Holland in addition to the remainder of the 82d Airborne as a part of one other star-crossed venture, box Marshal Montgomery’s vainglorious Operation marketplace backyard. Months of challenging wrestle in Holland have been through the conflict of the Bulge, and the lengthy not easy street throughout Germany to Berlin.
Megellas was once the main adorned officer of the 82d Airborne department and observed extra motion throughout the struggle than such a lot. but All tips on how to Berlin is greater than simply Maggie’s international conflict II memoir. all through his narrative, he skillfully interweaves tales of the opposite paratroopers of H corporation, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment. the result's a impressive account of guys at warfare.
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Extra info for All the Way to Berlin: A Paratrooper at War in Europe
M. m. My job is Athletic Officer of the glider pilots (500 men). I give them PT once a day, sometimes for two hours. That’s all I’ve got to do. ” Although we were no longer in the glider pilot corps and soon would be transferred out, we were kept on flying status. I managed to fly enough time in small planes (Cubs) to qualify for the additional $75 a month in pay. However, that would end and the flying status would terminate when I received my new orders. On 17 May, after two months of waiting and uncertainty, I received orders transferring me to the Parachute Training School at Fort Benning, Georgia.
Entered military service from Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. — signed James M. S. Army, Commanding Books published by The Random House Publishing Group are available at quantity discounts on bulk purchases for premium, educational, fund-raising, and special sales use. For details, please call 1-800-733-3000. To Carole and our two sons, James and Stephen This book is also dedicated to the memory of my buddy 1st Lt. Richard G. LaRiviere—or Rivers, as we called him— whose World War II experience was a mirror image of my own.
On 4 September I wrote my last letter home from the United States and stated that it would probably be the last one for a couple of months. The following day we boarded a liberty ship, a 10,000-ton freighter converted into a troop carrier. The freighter was outfitted with a larger galley and triple-decked bunk beds. We were jammed into every nook and cranny on the ship. On the ship with me was 1st Lt. Richard G. LaRiviere, from Chicopee Falls, Massachusetts. We called him Rivers. He and I had become close friends during the four weeks of parachute training and readying for our assignment.
All the Way to Berlin: A Paratrooper at War in Europe by James Megellas