More Than Courage: Sicily, Naples-Foggia, Anzio, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace, Central Europe: The Combat History of the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment in World War II

Nordyke, Phil

Published by Zenith Press, 2008
ISBN 10: 0760333130 / ISBN 13: 9780760333136
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Modern history of the 'devils in baggy pants', spearhead of many crucial actions, based on personal interviews, unpublished accounts & oral histories. Stout grey hardcover, gilt titling. Light wear to book & jacket, near fine. Text clean; viii, 472 pages; index, bibliography, notes, mapd, b/w photos. Size: Large Octavo. Bookseller Inventory #

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Drawing on many oral and unpublished written accounts from veterans of the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, Phil Nordyke brings the history of the regiment to life, conveying with remarkable immediacy and power what it was like to be there. This is history as it was lived by the men of the 504th, from their pre-war coming of age in the regiment, through the end of World War II, when they marched in the Victory Parade down Fifth Avenue in New York. The 504th earned three bronze stars for their parachute wings, one for each of their combat jumps.

 

 

From the Back Cover:

The World War II combat record of the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment was incredible. Its 3rd Battalion jumped into Sicily, spearheading the invasion. It was the first to jump at Salerno, which stabilized and saved the beachhead there. Company H was awarded the first of four Presidential Unit Citations that units of the regiment would be awarded during the war for its defense of the Chiunzi Pass area outside Naples as part of the Ranger Force. The 504th Regimental Combat Team (RCT) went on to fight in the Italian mountains, then came ashore at Anzio, where the 3rd Battalion stopped the breakthrough by the Hermann Göring Panzer Division and was awarded a Presidential Unit Citation. The regiment jumped into Holland in a daring daylight operation, capturing the Grave bridge and the bridge over the Maas-Waal Canal. Three days later, in one of the greatest feats of arms of the war, it made an assault crossing of the Waal River to capture the north ends of the two huge bridges at Nijmegen. In Belgium, during the Battle of the Bulge it fought side-by-side with its sister regiments of the 82nd Airborne Division, stopping the three best-equipped and most powerful SS Panzer divisions in the entire German Army. Together with the 325th Glider Infantry Regiment, it cracked the Siegfried Line, then defended the western side of the Rhine River, ultimately pushing east of the Elbe River where it met soldiers from the Soviet Union’s Red Army.

Ross Carter spoke for all 504th RCT combat veterans when he described the dead comrades and friends he had left behind in those cemeteries: “tough-fibered, hard-living, and reckless; but no braver, more loyal, or better fighting men ever lived.”

Drawing on personal interviews, oral histories, and unpublished written accounts of veterans of the 504th RCT, More Than Courage brings the history of the parachute regiment and the associated units of the regimental combat team to life, conveying with remarkable immediacy and power what it was like to be there. This is history as it was lived by these intrepid paratroopers, from their prewar coming of age as young men new to soldiering, through the end of World War II, when they marched in the Victory Parade up Fifth Avenue in New York.

 

 

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Bibliographic Details

Title: More Than Courage: Sicily, Naples-Foggia, ...
Publisher: Zenith Press
Publication Date: 2008
Binding: Hard Cover
Book Condition: Very Good
Edition: First Edition.

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Book Description Zenith Press, Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.A., 2008. Hard Cover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. First Edition. 472 pages, index, notes, maps, black & white photographs. Drawing on both oral and written accounts from over 300 veterans of the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, Phil Nordyke brings the thrilling history of this remarkable regiment to life, conveying with the intimate immediacy of first-person accounts what it was like to be there. From training at Fort Benning, Georgia, to deployment in Tunisia, desert parachute training in high winds that left the unit with a 30% casualty rate from fractures and injuries; the shipping to Italy, and involvement in spearheading that invasion, battles at Gela, Sicily, the landing at Salarno beach, fighting at Altavilla, the Anzio beachead, and the the long march through France and Belgium to Germany and victory.The 504th lost 318 soldiers killed by enemy fire on a parachute drop at Farrell Airfield, were involved in Operation Market Garden, and drove the German offensive at the Battle of The bulge in the Ardennes back. Their motto became 'Strike, Hold', and the German soldiers called them 'devils in baggy pants', with one German famously saying 'We never know when one will appear form nowhere'. A remarkable story, full of disasters, triumphs, battles lost and won, bravery, courage, and sheer tenacious determination, these first-person accounts will rivet any reader right from the start of combat operations to the final victory parade down Fifth Avenue in New York. Bookseller Inventory # 334709

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