442nd Antitank Company

Recognizing the threat that a German armored unit could pose to paratroopers with light weapons, FABTF planners decide to include an anti-tank unit in the airborne troops. With no airborne anti-tank units available in the Italian theater of operations, the 442nd Antitank Company of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team is selected.

On July 15, the unit of Lts. John M. Scotland Jr. and Louis A. Ferris was withdrawn from the front line at Collemezzano several kilometers north of Rome and attached to the 517th PRCT.

44 gliders are allocated to the 167 Nisei of the Anti Tank Company of Lieutenants John M. Scotland Jr. and Louis A. Ferris.

Dday - August 15, 1944

On August 15, at 4:00 in the afternoon, the Gliders Riders take off from the Ombrone airfield in Italy. Their mission is to quickly deploy, once on the ground, their anti-tank gun and hold the area until the troops from the sea can relay them. Light AAA fire is encountered as it reaches the coast. A glider carrying T/Sgt. Kawamura is hit by the flak and part of the tail is hit. As they fly over the land, all occupants of the gliders look at the ground for clear land to land. When the gliders approach the fields around Le Muy, they can see many multicolored parachutes lying on the ground, yellows, blues, reds...

In view of their rapid approach, the Nisei noticed that the favorable ground for their landing was not that to which they had been informed. A glider crashes into a tree, the two pilots breaking their legs on impact. The jeep in the glider is damaged. Fortunately the 28 ropes that held it back did not move it. Two other drivers are not so lucky. The slope and landing force are such that it cuts through all the ropes that roll the jeep forward. It hits the cabin at full speed and carries the two pilots, killing them instantly.

Nine men of the Anti Tank Company are injured during the landing and six of them are taken to the 517th Aid Station in Sainte-Roseline. There are many casualties among the Glider Pilots. The men wanted to help them, but were ordered to immediately unload their equipment and proceed to their rallying point. The Lts. Meier and Scotland with their platoon, go to their designated position. The Nisei set up their guns in less than an hour, and some reconnaissance units are organized.

They had to hold their positions for two days before being relayed by the troops that came by sea. Since the British of the 2nd Para Brigade did not take the Muy, this mission is entrusted to the 550th Glider. To avoid enemy infiltration, the 2nd and 4th platoon were put in positions, blocking the road between Le Muy and the 517th Regimental Command Post.