Lieutenant Colonel Edwin J. Ostberg

82nd Airborne Division - 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment - 1st Battalion
Utah Beach


We were scheduled to drop north of Amfreville. We ran into a fog. I saw my flight and it was all there for about the first three minutes. We ran into a lot of flak. Pebbles kept hitting, which I didn't have enough sense to realize what was going on. We had no T to guide on, and only one radar set of the six we dropped was set up. Don't sell the home-made lights short. They are not so bright for a great distance but do allow for good identification.
We had no automatic weapons until two o'clock the next morning. Phone communication should be in the plane. Second-hand information is no good, but you can't tell the pilot what his job is. We dropped from a low altitude. I landed in a very flat field, but it was inundated. I would endorse the home-made light on the bundle.
The method of assembly lights should be kept as simple as possible. A lot depends on the terrain. We had no flares. If we were to do it again I would have flares, because I consider them well worth while. It would be a good idea to have a flare to spare. 
(On the evening of Thursday, 13 August 1944, a debriefing conference was held at the Glebe Mount House, Leicester. During the course of the conference each commander present who had commanded a unit the size of a battalion or larger of the 82d Airborne Division in Operation Neptune, was permitted to talk for not to exceed ten minutes. Instructions were that each officer was to speak freely, without restraint, regarding any aspect of the operation during its airborne phase and to offer any criticism he saw fit in the interests of improving our operational technique in future combat. Commanders spoke in the order in which it was planned that they would land. Their statements were taken down verbatim as far as possible.)
(Courtesy: National Archives)