Paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division loading aircraft for Holland, 17 Sep 1944:
Part of the epic First Allied Airborne Army, the 82nd, along with the 101st, the British 1st Airborne, as well as later Polish and other Allied units, was to make a daylight combat jump in what is still the largest airborne operation of all time, Market Garden.
The paratroopers and their follow-on glider-borne infantry/artillery were to clear and hold the myriad of bridges in the Eindhoven–Arnhem corridor across the Netherlands while the British XXX Corps, a mechanized unit, was to come up and quickly relieve and reinforce them.
Of course, not all goes as planned…
A British Army sniper demonstrates the superior ‘Hawkins’ prone firing position (right) next to another in the standard position, at the 21st Army Group sniping school near Eindhoven, 15 October 1944. Note the scoped Enfields.
The Hawkins was described by one Tommy as “taking buttons off your shirt to get that much closer to the ground.”