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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

The Battlefield Explorer

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The Battlefield Explorer last won the day on September 5 2018

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  1. In this video we are going to take a tour of Margraten Cemetery. We will talk about the history, the wall of the missing and we visit all the Medal of Honor recipients buried there. Below are the links to the full citations: Lt. Col. Robert G. Cole, United States Army – Medal of Honor Plot B Row 15 Grave 27 https://www.fieldsofhonor-database.com/index.php/en/american-war-cemetery-margraten-c/44493-cole-robert-g S/Sgt. George Peterson, United States Army – Medal of Honor Plot D Row 21 Grave 10 https://www.fieldsofhonor-database.com/index.php/en/american-war-cemetery-margraten-p/45300-peterson-george 1st Lt. Walter J. Will, United States Army – Medal of Honor Plot D Row 3 Grave 32 https://www.fieldsofhonor-database.com/index.php/en/american-war-cemetery-margraten-w/45488-will-walter-j Pvt. George J. Peters, United States Army – Medal of Honor Plot G Row 17 Grave 8 https://www.fieldsofhonor-database.com/index.php/en/american-war-cemetery-margraten-p/44570-peters-george-j Pfc. Willy F. James, Jr., United States Army – Medal of Honor Plot P Row 9 Grave 9 https://www.fieldsofhonor-database.com/index.php/en/american-war-cemetery-margraten-j/45736-james-willy-f-jr Pfc. Walter C. Wetzel, United States Army – Medal of Honor Plot N Row 18 Grave 10 https://www.fieldsofhonor-database.com/index.php/en/american-war-cemetery-margraten-w/44267-wetzel-walter-c --- Subscribe to my channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheBattlefieldExplorer?sub_confirmation=1 Support me on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/thebattlefieldexplorer Like me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/theBattlefieldexplorer/ Follow me on Twitter: https://twitter.com/battlefieldexpl
  2. Early in the morning on September 17th, 1944, Operation Market Garden is about to begin. In Southern England, the airfields are a beehive of activity, airplanes, and gilders are being made ready and paratroopers are about to board the C-47 Dakota’s that will take them to the Netherlands to capture the bridges and help end the war by Christmas. On Chilbolton Airfield Serial A-8 is made ready, it comprises of 45 C-47 Dakota’s from 304 and 305 Squadron of the 442 Troop Carrier Squadron. They will transport the 3rd Battalion of the 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment and 3rd Platoon B-Company of the 326th Airborne Engineers from the 101st Airborne. Their destination: Dropzone A near Eerde and Veghel on what is soon to be known as Hell’s Highway. Their task: capture the bridges at Veghel and secure the road for the British XXXCorps to pass through on their way to Arnhem. Part of Serial A-8 is Dakota with tail number 43-15111, nicknamed Sonya, she has the following crew: Pilot: 2nd Lt Herbert Shulman (born in Puerto Rico) Co-Pilot: Omar Kampschmidt Mechanic: Ralph Zipf Radio operator Roger Gullixon The Dakota takes off without incident, forms up into V of Vs formation and flies along the Southern route to the Dropzones of the 101st Airborne. When crossing the border the formation comes under heavy anti-aircraft fire as the slow moving and low flying formation overflies the front lines. Shulman flew his Dakota with daring and experience through this anti-aircraft fire to drop his load (stick) of paratroopers on the drop zone. Suddenly he was in serious trouble. James Gurthrie, who was a witness to the events, recalls: Above the Dropzone fire broke out in the “111", most probably by a direct hit. The paratroopers and the parapacks were dropped normally. The Dakota continued north and then made a wide turn to the left. It lost a lot of altitude and was below the formation. The last I saw was three man jumping from the burning plane by parachute, of which one parachute did not open. In the famous book, A Bridge to Far, by Cornelius Ryan, Shulman is quoted radioing his flight leader: “Don’t worry about me, I’m going to drop these troops right on the DZ.” Shulman probably said this in reference to the drop in Normandy when the paratroopers landed over a wide area because of heavy anti-aircraft fire and a cloud bank that made formation flying impossible. Another eyewitness continues the story, this time by Sergeant Charles A Mitchell: Mitchell watched in horror as the plane to my left streamed flames from its port engine. As the pilot held it steadily on course, Mitchell saw the entire stick of paratroopers jump right through the fire. The Sonya Crashed near Erp on the banks of the Aa river below the Vogelenzang road. Two men died in the crash, the brave pilot Shulman and his co-pilot Kampschmidt who’s parachute failed to open. The pilots were buried temporarily on the cemetery in Erp and later repatriated home, I was unable to locate their graves. Memorial On the cemetery at Erp, one of the propellers is there as a monument, on it is a plaque, it reads (translated): CRASHED IN THE STRUGGLE FOR OUR LIBERATION The propeller of a C-47 Skytrain nr 43-15111 named Sonya code V4-0 of the 304 Troop Carrier Squadron (TCS) of the US 9th air force. On Sunday afternoon 17 September 1944 crashed on the bank of the Aa (river) near Vogelenzang, Erp. The plane took off from Chilbolton airbase in England and dropped paratroopers at Veghel for Operation Market Garden. Video From the above story, I've made a video in which we visit the drop zone, crash site and the cemetery with the propeller. If you like my videos, please subscribe to my YouTube channel by clicking on this link: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheBattlefieldExplorer?sub_confirmation=1
  3. My latest video is about the Battle for Arnhem, specifically the reconnaissance squadrons mission to capture the bridge at Arnhem "by Thunderclap surprise" with their jeeps. Contrary to popular myths, their jeeps did arrive and they started on their mission confident that they would be at the bridge within an hour. Unfortunately, they started late which gave the Germans time to establish a roadblock which ended the mission less than 2 miles from where they started. In this video, we follow the men from the landing zone to the railway underpass near Wolfheze, the location of the ambush. Then we will look at the Germans; why were the Germans able to put up a roadblock so close to the landing zones so quickly? Why were they there? It is my longest video to date and one I put in a lot of time and effort to research, write, film and edit, I hope you will enjoy it! If you like my videos, please subscribe today! https://www.youtube.com/c/TheBattlefieldExplorer?sub_confirmation=1
  4. Welcome to Château de Rolley, the headquarters of the 502nd Parachute Infantry Regiment during the siege of Bastogne. It was also here that the commander Colonel Chappuis was awarded the DSC by General Patton on January 14th, 1945. Please subscribe if you enjoy my videos: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheBattlefieldExplorer?sub_confirmation=1
  5. The Battlefield Explorer

    A Family History of Warfare

    Do you know which unit your (tanker) grandfather was in? Maybe I can help with some information about Operation Market Garden.
  6. The Battlefield Explorer

    The Best War Museum In The Netherlands: Overloon

    Some more picture of the museum: Mack No 5 and M6 High-Speed Tractor: A display with a jackhammer, powered by a LeRoi compressor: A Goliath, radio controlled tracked vehicle which was packed with explosives:
  7. Taking a look at the best war museum The Netherlands has to offer, Overloon! If you are into tanks and other military vehicles, this is the place to be! Please subscribe if you like my videos: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheBattlefieldExplorer?sub_confirmation=1
  8. Taking a closer look at a German gun battery which consisted of four gun casemates, and one observation bunker. The guns have been removed after the war; the rest is in remarkable condition! If you like my videos please subscribe today: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheBattlefieldExplorer?sub_confirmation=1
  9. A step by step walkthrough at the location where Easy Company fought the battle at the Crossroads, made famous in Band of Brothers Episode 6. We are going "boots on the ground" and walk through the entire battle, from the moment the first patrol spotted the Germans to the evacuation of the wounded late on October 5th, 1944. Please subscribe today! https://www.youtube.com/c/TheBattlefieldExplorer?sub_confirmation=1
  10. The Battlefield Explorer

    Gigantic E-Boat Bunker in IJmuiden

    Here are some pictures of the bunker that I took while filming: The Torpedo door, note the armored door that is still present and the thickness of the walls. To the right of the Torpedo door, there is an entrance with a massive protective cover. you can see a bit of bomb damage on it. Behind it, on the wall, there is a lot more damage visible. On the other side of the bunker there is a hill which offers a great view:
  11. The Battlefield Explorer

    Gigantic E-Boat Bunker in IJmuiden

    If you enjoy my videos, please subscribe today! https://www.youtube.com/c/TheBattlefieldExplorer?sub_confirmation=1
  12. There is an original WWII Bailey bridge not too far from where I live, it's been on my list to visit it for a while now.
  13. On Saturday I was in Bastogne for a day of fun and filming during the annual commemoration of the siege. One of their traditions is the throwing of the Nuts from the balcony of the city hall. This year the honor was given to a number of WWII veterans, including Jim Caroll, Robert Izumi, Joe Glawson and Vince Speranza. If you like my videos, please subscribe today: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheBattlefieldExplorer?sub_confirmation=1
  14. In the Dutch coastal town of IJmuiden, the Germans built two gargantuan bunkers for their Schnellboots. Only one of them survived the war. That bunker is 247 meters long, 74 meters wide, 18 meters tall, they do not get much bigger than this! If you enjoy my videos, please subscribe today! https://www.youtube.com/c/TheBattlefieldExplorer?sub_confirmation=1
  15. The Battlefield Explorer

    The Capture Of The Bridge Over The Rhine At Remagen, 7 March 1945

    Here are two pictures I took there a couple of years ago. Sadly the 1058th is not mentioned on any of the memorial plaques.
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