Operation Napier Commemorative Jump
|Written by Brord van der Maat - Pathfinder Holland
Date: May 5th 2007
Location: Veldhoefweg near Putten, Holland
Event: SAS and SOE commemoration jump & WW2 crash site tour
Organisation:FMV Green Sparkssexs winamp
On May 5th the WW2 vehicle club "Green Sparks" organized a WW2 crashsite tour around the town of Putten in Holland. Part of this tour was a visit to a DZ wich was called DZ NAPIER when on April 17th 1945 17 SAS paras were dropped here. The organisation asked Pathfinder to make a parachute display drop at this site. Pathfinder was happy to comply with this request. A manifest was opened and the following persons made up the Pathfinder crew:
- Ron Visser (DZOC)
- Edith Crawford (first aid)
- Jack Corstens
Cameraman: Arjan Wolters (freefall)
Jumpmaster: Peter Braun (freefall)
Aircraft: C-208 Caravan
RV was on May 5th at 0830 hrs in a town called Terschuur. First a power point presentation was given to all tour participants and the Pathfinder group. At 10.30 the tour started, the Pathfinder DZ crew joined the convoy, the jumpers were brought to Teuge airfield. The convoy was composed of almost 60 vehicles dating from WW2 to the late 1950's. The convoy first stopped at the crash site of a Spitfire which was flown by the Norwegian pilot Lauritz Othar Godø. The second stop was at the crash site of a Halifax bomber. The 3rd stop was at DZ NAPIER. At 12.30 hrs exactly the C-208 arrived at the DZ. To commorate all the weapon drops that were made in this area (40+ tons !!) a container drop was simulated. At 500ft a package under a 16ft round canopy was dropped. This drop went perfect, unfortunately the chute was pulled into barbed wire after landing by the strong wind. The result was a damaged chute.
Next the aircraft climbed to 2000ft and 10 static line jumps were made in 3 runs. All jumped the MC-1C canopy, more than half of which were the new Pathfinder club parachutes. 4 reserves were sponsored by the Texel Parachute Centre. Brord vd Maat jumped a MC-1C that is owned by Frank Spiering. Brord had a GPS nav-aid with him that registred a descent rate of about 850ft per minute, a very nice and easy descent rate for a round parachute, noticably slower than the PX1 or GQ canopies. The wind was on the maximum limit for round canopy jumps so a few of the jumpers wisely chose to land on the fields next to the DZ. 5 jumpers landed on the DZ, Dave landing closest to the T-marker of all.