Flight Officer - Glider Pilot - 82nd Troop Carrier Squadron - 436th Troop Carrier Group
June 2. Big stuff brewing - Briefed
by airborne artillery today - Under guard now.
June 5. Power boys dropped paratroops
on Cherbourg peninsula about midnite. All planes back OK.
June 6. Big day! Tookoff 2037
hit coast of France 2255. Flak heavy - strings of redbeads - orange
golf balls. Hek - I'm scared! Released in wrong territory - dark,
hardly see - still shouting at us.
Little field - watch those trees - pull up Doc - ohhhh - Not a bit
of the nose left - only part of center of fuselage. First out -
feet through floor - Doc pinned behind something - pulled him out.
Sgt. Davis next - two bad cuts behind knee. Slim Smith went out
throughside. Rogers and Rappey dumped out rear - nasty cut on Rogers'
Brunowski OK. Gliders crashing allaround - horrible sounds.
Look out there's one on top of us - no - went over and hit trees
on other side of field.
Where is that sulfa powder - can't find any. Give Davis a hypo.
Finally bandaged up.
Expect to be shot any minute. Ack Ack gunners still trying to hit
us. HE dropping down the road apiece. Jeep and gun pinned. Try for
awhile to loosen - pick up equip. and dig in along road.
Two duds fall next to our holes - duds, thank God.
More survivors come in.
Adam, Bone and Ben Winks lying down the road - dead. Many dead and
wounded. Gunfire getting closer - let's get out of here - where
Finally take off down road when tracers start pupping through hedge.
Too warm for me. Few jeeps get out. Getting light now - here comes
a strafing plane - no, turned away. Pass infantry in ditches, dead
Germans - a house full of live ones - burned and knocked out German
guns and half tracks. Dig in in orchard for day. Go sniper hunting
- pick up cartridge belt and chute. Miss snipers.
Spend nite in hole - next am hike through St. Mere Eglise.
Wrong road - back through town - snipers still banging away. From
church steeple - houses and shops wrecked. horses and Germans lying
around - smelly. Find CP and head back for beach - same way we came.
Poor, blistered feet - aching back, pass long lines of infantry
and tanks - wade through coastal marshes - fired on again by snipers.
Beach at last. Tanks on their sides in sand.
Zane H. Graves (June
|| - The five pages of the notebook
related to D-Day.
Courtesy Gary Graves.