03/30/09 135 W - + 15 - 11 Camp Mackall Airborne Maneuvers, Fatalities, 1945


Back to the Forties with some more random history. On Sept. 25, 1945, Army airborne maneuvers at Camp Mackall turned deadly when 13 soldiers were killed, and 58 injured. The exercises, which duplicated many of the tactics used by airborne forces in Normandy and Holland, included the night deployment of 184 C-47 transport planes carrying 2,500 paratroopers. The planes raced over the landing areas at approximately 400 feet, and with the moon blacked out by clouds. Most of the parachutists missed the field, and dropped instead into high pines surrounding the area. One person was killed, and 58 were injured. One of the planes crashed, killing 12 aboard: eight paratroopers, and four crew members. Four other parachutists jumped to safety. The maneuvers were said to be the largest ever staged in the United States. Source: News & Observer, Sept. 26, 1945.





  
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