(John Bohmer/Stars and Stripes)

Amfreville, Normandy, France, June 5, 1994: Parachutes glide toward earth as some 550 paratroopers reenact the 101st Airborne Division D-Day jump. Nineteen of them were veterans of the actual landing 50 years ago who had fought to liberate the small town of Sainte-Mère-Église. They were the first to jump, together with 22 other World War II combat paratrooper veterans.

They preceded about 500 active-duty American and French paratroopers. The American paratroopers were from the 101st and 82nd Airborne divisions, and the 3rd Battalion, 325th Airborne Battalion Combat Team in Vicenza, Italy. All landed in a 300-acre drop zone in Amfreville, about 3 miles from Sainte-Mère-Église.

Read Stars and Stripes reporter Philip H. Bucknell’s 1944 eyewitness account from that jump, published in Stars and Stripes’ London edition, June 14, 1944, here.

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