UNIFORMS OF THE 509TH PIB

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Red Beret

 

The M-42 Parachute Jumper Coat 'Modified' This jump jacket has been modified for the jump into Southern France by sewing a bandoleer into the skirt of the jacket.  This allowed extra room for cigarettes and 'D' Ration Bars (Chocolate) both of these items were issued to Soldiers and made great trading material with the local population and other Soldiers.  The uniform is also camouflaged with black and green paint applied with a spray gun. While in Italy preparing for the jump into Southern France, Soldiers would place a box over their head and hold their arms out while another Soldier would spray on the camo pattern.  Other modifications that would be seen is pockets on the elbows to stuff with a felt pad to potect the elbows while dropping into the prone position.  Also the lower pockets would be hand sewn down so that grenades carried in the lower pockets would not tear through on the jump.

 

M-42 Parachute Jumper Trousers 'Modified' These trousers were modified by placing pockets on the knees to accept felt pads and sprayed with camouflage as described above for Southern France.

This is the Raincoat, Single Coated O.D. Mounted that was issued to Soldiers early in the war.  This example is dated Jan 1941. 

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