Captain Wylie Cooper
The 82nd Parachute Maintenance Company
he 82nd Parachute Maintenance Company was composed of Riggers from the 504th PIR, 505th PIR, 376th PFAB, 456th PFAB and the 307th Airborne Engineers under the command of Captain Marin.
By mid-February 1944, the company moved to Cottesmore, Rutland County, England and assigned "A" hangar at the Cottesmore Airdrome as a packing shed. The line riggers (504th & 505th PIRs) were stationed at Quorn near Leicester. Captain Marin was eventually reassigned to Division and Captain Griffin assumed command.
Captain Marin's reassignment was short-lived when Captain Griffin, Captain Wylie Cooper
(picture left) and Lieutenant Anderson were injured in a jeep accident near Leicester.
After D-Day a parachute jump school was initiated by the 82nd Airborne Division at Ashwell to qualify jumpers in order to replace the losses suffered during the Normandy campaign. Experience riggers were assigned to instruct the new recruits and a training course similar to Fort Benning was established. From mid-summer until October, Ashwell was never without the sight and sound of yelling instructors, sullen students, rumbling transports and a sky filled with parachutes.
Eventually, Captain Griffin returned to command after his release from the hospital. The Riggers, meanwhile, were preparing to move to France from Ashwell. However, the German offensive in the Ardennes cancelled the move temporarily and the Riggers were sent back to southern England and attached to various airfields around Reading and Oxford to pack equipment parachutes.
82nd Parachute Maintenance Company - Pictures
- 505th PIR Riggers
- Photo of 505th PIR Riggers before D-Day jump. (Photo includes names.)
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