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Posted on Aug 20, 2004 in War College

Rescue at Remagen

By Randolph Hils

Suella Bernard believes that she was on this second glider mission. She told Bud Berry that, "the glider on which she flew had a wheel collapse on landing. It veered to the edge of the field and came to rest near a fence. The patients had to be transported to the surgical tent by ambulance." At this writing the identity of the pilot of the second glider remains a mystery.

The glider-evacuation service was in place do to the ingenuity and talent of many. General Orders No. 69, HQ, IX Troop Carrier Command dated 17 May 1945 lists the participants in this mission who were awarded the Air Medal. They are:

Suella V. Bernard 1st Lt. 816th MAES

Francis D. Woodward T. Sgt. 441st TCG

Howard H. Cloud Jr. Maj. HQ, IX Troop Carrier Command


Walter A Barker 2nd Lt. 304th TCS, 442nd TCG

Gerald C. Berry 1st Lt 91st TCS, 439th TCG

John F. Clippard 1st Lt. 302nd TCS, 441st TCG

George D. Wolf 2nd Lt. 59th TCS, 61st TCG

Albert D. Haug Capt. 816th MAES

Just a week after the collapse of the Ludendorff Bridge on the 24th the giant airborne Army of VARSITY breached the Rhine a second time. Bud Berry recalled, "This pick-up was not thought of as a single event but was part of a plan for use in the Varsity Mission 2 days hence. The plan conceived to be used if the ground troops crossing the Rhine were unable to effect a rapid rendezvous with the airborne troops and medical evacuations were necessary. Several gliders were to be equipped with litters and pick-up stations and dropped with the invasion forces. They would then be used as medical ambulances utilizing the snatch procedure if necessary. The link-up was made quickly so the plan was never used." The rescue at Remagen and the glider ambulance service faded into history.

Authors Note:

During WWII, Howard Cloud earned the Distinguished Flying Cross with one oak leaf cluster, the Bronze Star with Valor, the Purple Heart and the Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters. He went on to a long distinguished career in the US Air Force. In 1965 he retired with the rank of Colonel. Today he lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado and is an active supporter of the 440th Troop Carrier Group Association.

Gerald A."Bud" Berry entered the US Army Air Corps Aviation Cadet program in December of 1942, received his Commission as 2nd Lt. in November of 1943 and was assigned to The Troop Carrier Command with the 91st Squadron of the 439th TCG. His combat missions included the Normandy paradrop, Southern France paradrop and glider tow, Holland glider tow and re-supply. He earned the Air Medal with 3 Oak Leaf Clusters and unit awards of the Presidential Unit Citation and French Croix de Guerre and Fourragere and ETO Ribbon with 7 battle stars.

Discharged from regular service in October of 1945 Bud immediately entered Pennsylvania State University graduating in June of 1949 with a BS in Chemical Engineering. He is a loyal supporter of the 91st Troop Carrier Squadron Assn. WWII and resides in Clearwater, FL.

Bibliography and Sources:

Berry, Gerald A., emails to author, 12/30/03, 1/19/04 and 7/20/04

Cloud, Howard H., personal papers and interviews with the author in November 2003.

Heinz, W.C., Gliders Take Wounded From Rhine, The New York Sun Newspaper, 1945.

Lowden, John L., Silent Wings at War: Combat Gliders in WWII, 1992, Smithsonian Institution Press

Young, Charles H., Into the Valley: The Untold Story of the USAAF Troop Carrier in WWII, 1995, PrintComm, Inc.

This article is posted with permission from The 440th Troop Carrier Group History Project.

The 440th Troop Carrier Group History Project was formed in the first months of 2003. The primary mission of the organization is to record, preserve and disseminate historical documents, photos and related materials of the 440th Troop Carrier Group, 9th Troop Carrier Command, 9th Air force, European Theater of Operations during World War II.

You can visit their website here:

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1 Comment

  1. Dear Sir,
    I read Your report with great interest. But could You give me an idea where the airfield? near remagen was exactly located?
    Yours faithfully
    Heribert Selzer
    Auf Jägert 7
    53572 Unkel (Rhein)