Orville Ralph Vanderpool, born 27 August 1921 in Kansas, grew up in Oklahoma, and was just an ordinary young man who joined the service in the autumn of 1939 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Orville was the son of William Arthur “Art” Vanderpool (1889-1967) and Sarah E. “Lizzie” Cody (1888-ca 1922).
|Orville Ralph Vanderpool|
Today on the western edge of the small village of Magneville stands a memorial stone erected in memory of the 18 506th PIR paratroopers and four 95th Troop Carrier Squadron flight crew. These 22 men lost their lives during the early hours of 6th June 1944 when the crippled aircraft in which they were flying was shot down. The Third Battalion hit its drop zone right on the mark. As a result, two of the three planes in the battalion that were shot down were from I Company. The first plane to go down was Chalk 15 carrying what is believed to have been a mixture of men from 1st Platoon and HQ section. The jumpmaster was 1Lt. Gerald V. Howard and the pilot was 1Lt. Ray Pullen; #15 had been one of three planes randomly selected to carry additional ammunition (TNT) in wing bundles.
A German tracer round hit one of the bundles and the plane exploded in mid-air.
The marker: near Magneville in France:
The names of those who died there that day:
1Lt. Gerry Howard - (Jumpmaster) (KIA 6/6/44)