The Americans Have Arrived, the Airborne in Normandy, 1944
Originally released by Valor Studios, the legend on the bottom of the print reads… “June 6, 1944, soon after 1:00 a.m. . . . Across Normandy charge the C-47s of IX Troop Carrier Command and their fighting cargo, the paratroopers of the 101st and 82nd Airborne Divisions. They have come to liberate the oppressed. Braving walls of clouds, German flak, and with just the moon to shine their path, the pilots toggle the green light over French fields and villages like Sainte-Mère-Église, a sign to the paratroopers—Go! With church bells ringing below and the prayers of the world behind them, the boys of the 101st and 82nd Divisions brush fear aside and jump into the night.”
Assigned the task of establishing critical roadblocks, seizing vital bridges and crossroads as well as denying German reinforcements access to the vulnerable landing beaches, the paratroopers of the 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions were dropped into Normandy hours before the main assault forces hit the coastal defenses.
“Into the Night” depicts several of the troop transports carrying Easy Company into Normandy: starting from the top left, the C-47 with the tail identification letter of ‘N’ is flow by Lieutenant Harold Capelluto who is conveying Easy’s commander, Lieutenant Meehan, along with the headquarters’ section. The plane has been hit and is seen just moments before it rolls into a right turn and crashes, killing all aboard. The C-47 featured in the center is Chalk #70 with Lieutenant Buck Compton, Don Malarkey, Brad Freeman, Joe Lesniewski, ‘Wild Bill’ Guarnere and other members of the Second platoon. Seen in the top right of the artwork, identified by the code letter ‘P’ on the tail, is the plane carrying Lieutenant Dick Winter’s chalk, Chalk #67, jumping at four-hundred feet.
Behind the Art
Developed by the British, the ‘Kit Bag’ or ‘Leg Bag’ was designed for paratroopers to carry bulky equipment, such as radios or bazookas that could not be easily or safely attached to the jumper. Once under a full canopy and confident of their landing, the jumper would lower the bag on a twenty-foot line to prevent injury when landing.
439th Troop Carrier Group
The Group was activated in June 1943 and arrived in Europe in March 1944 to begin training for the airdrop into France. Identified by the code L4 on the nose of their C-47 Dakotas, the 439th Troop Carrier Group comprised of four troop carrier squadrons: the 91st, 92nd, 93rd and 94th. For D-Day, the 439th flew out of Upottery, England and later flew missions for the invasion of southern France, Holland, the relief of Bastogne and the crossing of the Rhine.
Instantly recognizable by the Church of St. Mary’s unique steeple, the village of Sainte-Mère-Église was the scene of intense fighting as elements of the 82nd and 101st descended upon an alert German garrison. The town was held by American paratroopers until the afternoon of June 7, when Allied tanks and additional infantry arrived from Utah Beach to relieve the surrounded airborne troops.
Faithfully reproduced from the original artwork, Into The Night by Matt Hall, depicts the 101st Airborne Division. In addition to the caption, the bottom margin of the print includes the insignia of the 9th Troop Carrier Command.
- Originally printed by Valor Studios:
- 500 Main Editions
- 360 Victory Editions
- 140 Publisher’s Proofs
- 160 Artist Proofs
- 100 Signer’s Proofs
- Each print is hand-signed by the artist
- Each print includes a Certificate of Authenticity
- This limited edition lithograph is printed on acid-free, archival quality, 100 lb. stock
- Print size: 32″ x 22.5″
- All prints are sold unframed
- Print color may vary from screen color