They were the Screaming Eagles’ most notorious unit. A small bunch of raw, tough, ruthless young men, mostly from the Dustbowl, with scant regard for authority. These men had withstood the worst that the Depression could throw at them. Hard drinking and savage fighting - and that was only in training – they were never ones to salute an officer, clean their uniforms, or have a regular bath. Officially they were the First Demolition Squadron, HQ Company, 506th PIR, 101st Airborne. Unofficially they were the ‘Filthy Thirteen’. And if the reputation of this unique bunch of renegades within the ranks of the 101st was formidable, for the Germans it became one of sheer terror. Because, for the ‘Filthy Thirteen’, anything not directly concerned with killing the enemy was irrelevant. Theirs was a story so amazing that it reputedly became the inspiration for the Hollywood war movie ‘The Dirty Dozen’.
"D-Day Drop" captures the moment on the night of 5 June 1944 when the 101st Airborne’s legendary squad of elite paratroopers jump into battle in the vital hours before the D-Day sea-borne landings commence. The pilots of the 440th Troop Carrier Group struggle to keep their Dakotas level as deadly flak pummels the formation.
Overall size: 20¼" x 26¾"
Available in the following editions
Signed by two of the 'Filthy Thirteen'
Jake ‘McNasty’ McNiece
The unofficial leader of the ‘Filthy Thirteen’, Jake McNiece was the inspiration for the ‘Mohawk’ haircuts and war paint that the men wore on D-Day. He survived four combat jumps during WW II, the average was 1½. After Normandy, he jumped during Operation Market Garden, and again in the Battle of the Bulge. His final combat jump came in February 1945 against the Siegfried Line.
Jack ‘Hawkeye’ Wormer
Tagged ‘Hawkeye’, Jack was the best shot in the unit. As a Ranger he had trained with the British Commandos before joining the ‘Filthy Thirteen’ before D-Day. Separated from the others on landing he initially fought alongside the 501st PIR before being reunited his squad, with whom he fought for the rest of the war.