February 15th, 2007 -
WASHINGTON, D.C. -
U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) introduced a Senate Resolution today
designating August 16, 2007 as “National Airborne Day.” August 16,
2007 will be the 67th Anniversary of the first official jump by the
Army Parachute Test Platoon. The resolution was co-sponsored by
Senators Reed (D-RI), Clinton (D-NY), Burr (R-NC), Reid (D-NV),
Snowe (R-ME), Kerry (D-MA), and Gregg (R-NH). It will be referred to
the Senate Judiciary Committee for consideration.
“Over the last 67 years, U.S. airborne forces have performed important military and peace-keeping operations throughout the world, including Operation Iraqi Freedom. August 16th is a day to celebrate and thank Airborne veterans and Airborne units for their tireless commitment to our Nation's defense and for the ideals of duty, honor and country they embody,” Hagel said.
On June 25, 1940, the War Department authorized the Parachute Test Platoon to experiment with the potential use of airborne troops. The Parachute Test Platoon, which was composed of 48 volunteers, performed the first official Army parachute jump on August 16th. The success of the Platoon led to the formation of a large and successful airborne contingent that has served from World War II until the present.
Members of the 82nd Airborne Division Association have recognized Hagel for his efforts to designate the date as “National Airborne Day.” Since 2004 Hagel has introduced, and the Senate has passed, a Senate Resolution designating August 16th as “National Airborne Day.”