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THE CO-PILOT (page 7)

They stood there and found no evidence of damage until someone said, "There it is", and they found one small hole from a rifle bullet. If the German soldier had been a better marksman, he would have missed the altimeter and picked off Glenn Grimes. The 'Co-pilot thought there was a lot to be said for the right seat as they walked to Squadron Operations.

D-Day was 0450 hours on the plus side. The 4th Division would not land on Utah Beach until 0630 and the crew of A/C #42-93002 was still hiding in the hedgerows of Normandy. Still with them were the two paratroopers and with dawn breaking, the healthy paratrooper departed to find his unit while the injured man remained until 1400 hours. Through the night they had also heard the firing of heavy artillery doing battle with the paratroopers and with the opening of the naval guns prior to the landings, they decided to stay put until the troops had landed on the shore. At 1400 the other paratrooper hobbled off on the injured ankle and the crew members decided it was time to find friendly troops and made their way back to the crash site. Following a circuitous route, F/0 Magleby and S/Sgt. Farris were left in hiding while Capt. Cartwright, Lt. Osborne and S/Sgt. DeLuca proceed [sic] to the remains of 002. All they found was a tail section - no food, water or supplies of any kind. Charlie checked the area where they had left the paratrooper the night before and discovered that he had left on his own or been picked up by someone else. Returning to the hedgerow and the other crew members, a scouting trip was arranged. Capt. Cartwright in one direction - Lt. Osborne in the opposite. They discovered farm houses and French families, cows and little else. Returning to the hedgerow they thought it might be just as well to wait for the American troops to find them. Without sleep since the morning of June 5th, some of the crew members took advantage of the opportunity and would doze off. On one such occasion, they had to awaken Sgt. DeLuca because they feared his snoring would give away their presence.

About 2000 hours, they heard shouting in the next field and there was no mistaking the American voices. Ed Osborne suggested that they should try to make contact. Charlie said he would go and Alma Magleby volunteered, whereas Ed said it was his idea and he should go. Ed got up and started walking across the field figuring that if he exposed himself and not being armed, no one would fire on him. It worked once. Ed was within a few feet of the troops before they saw him and were quite surprised to see a man in something less than battle dress. Ed was the next to be surprised when one of the troops said "Eddie Osborne", and he was looking at Lt. Carl Kronenberg, a High School classmate that had landed with the 4th Division. Having been vouched for as 100% American, Ed was instructed to return and bring the rest of the crew. He crossed the field once more to a point where he could see and be seen by the other crew members. Ed yelled to join him as everything was alright and the four others joined him as they made their way back to the 4th Division. This time it was a different kind of trip. Half way across the field they were fired on by troops on their left. They hit the dirt and yelled at the trigger happy GI's to knock it off. Ed, having crossed twice before, got up and started to run, when they fired again and the navigator took a shot in the rear. As Ed went down, everyone got in the act and stopped the firing and made their way to where Ed was down but not out. A quick examination determined that the bullet had entered the pelvis area and had not gone clear through the body and apparently missed all the vital organs. It was the vital organs that most concerned Ed Osborne. Looking at Charlie Cartwright, Ed asked, "Are they still there, Charlie?" Charlie spread his legs and said, "They're still there, Ed, both of them".

Ed Osborne said good-bye to the crew members as they were escorted to the rear area. The medics patched him up and he was transported to the beach area to wait for evacuation. After a couple of days on the beach, a month in England and a year and a half in the hospitals in the States, Ed Osborne recovered and married his nurse from Halloran General Hospital in Staten Island, NY. To this day, Ed likes to claim that he met his wife while in bed and the "family jewels" that Ed was so concerned about produced several offspring.
 

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