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507th Parachute Infantry Regiment

The 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment was activated on 20 July 1942 at Fort Benning, Georgia. In December 1943, while in the North of Ireland, the 507th was attached to the 82nd Airborne Division to replace a redeployed unit. In August of 1944, the 507th was permanently assigned to the 17th Airborne Division, as the 82nd was back to its original strength.


Although the unit had seen previous action, as part of the 17th Airborne Division, the 507th engaged in the Ardennes, Rhineland, and Central Europe Campaigns. The unit redeployed to France on 25 December 1944, and was used in the counterattacks against the Germans in January and early February 1945. Operation Varsity was the second combat jump for the 507th PIR. The Drop Zone selected for the Regiment was located at the southern edge of the Diersfordt Forest, three miles northwest of Wesel. During this action, Private George J. Peters earned the Medal of Honor for single-handedly attacking a German machine gun emplacement.


Military government duties began 12 April, and active contact with the enemy ceased 18 April 1945. The division came under the XXII Corps on 24 April. It continued its occupation duties until 15 June 1945 when it returned to France for redeployment. Many troopers were then transferred to the 82nd and 101st Airborne and for occupation duty in Berlin and Austria. Others joined the 13th Airborne Division, which returned to the US to be readied for the Pacific. The remainder of the division was deactivated on 15 September, 1945 at Camp Miles Standish, Massachusetts.

Official website of the veterans and descendants of the 17th Airborne Division.  World War II US Army paratroopers
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