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Lt Briand Beaudin - Medical Detachment, HQ 3rd Battalion

After exiting the plane over Holland, I took out and cocked my .45 pistol.

As I was oscillating downward, I realized that my pistol was no match for the anti-aircraft (AA) weapons aimed in my direction, so I put my pistol away.

I landed just outside the enclosure of the then silent AA battery, and many enemy soldiers came towards me to surrender.

After assembling, the 3rd Battalion walked from the drop zone to Berg-En-Dal, where I set up an aid station in the home of a Nijmegen banker named Van Gorp.

The bankerís eldest son, Gerard, a member of the Dutch underground resistance, loaded me on the back of his motorcycle and we went in search for a car. We appropriated an abandoned late-model Oldsmobile, which we were able to start by crossing wires under the steering wheel.

In returning from our forward aid station in Beek, where we had help from Dutch nurses, Lt. Schools, my assistance surgeon, was driving the Oldsmobile when he took a wrong road and sped by our advance soldiers at a road block.

On realizing this, we climbed an embankment to turn around and the car stalled. We had some terrifying moments trying to restart it and escape back to our own lines.

Later on, I was seated in the front seat of a jeep which was used to pick up the wounded. We were moving slowly on top of a bank above flat ground, when suddenly we rounded a corner of a house and found ourselves facing the menacing big gun of a German tank.

My driver came to a complete stop, put the jeep in reverse and shot back to the protection of the house, then sped away while the tank gun was exploding with fury.

The expert driver was so unnerved by this experience; he was unable to drive again and was assigned less stressful work.

Then there was the time I had walked and crawled forward to assess the combat situation concerning casualties. I had to hit the dirt because of incoming shells. I found myself behind the British Tank and saw two Tommies beneath it, calmly having their afternoon tea.

I have forgotten many things, but some things stand out, such as those eerie night creatures.

On the move one night, we were startled to see many people completely in white, aimlessly walking about in the woods.

They were not ghosts, merely terrified occupants of the nearby insane asylum.

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