Operation Dove

This was the Allied northern part of the airborne operation near Oraguignan in the south of German-occupied France by Major General Robert T. Frederick’s 1st Airborne Task Force (1st Provisional Airborne Division) in support of ‘Dragoon’ (i) (15 August 1944).

The southern half of the airborne effort was ‘Rugby’.

The 1st Airborne Task Force comprised Colonel Rupert D. Graves’s US 517th Parachute Infantry, Lieutenant Colonel William P. Narborough’s US 509th Parachute Infantry Battalion, Lieutenant Colonel Edward I. Sachs’s 550th Glider Infantry Battalion, Lieutenant Colonel Wood D. Joerg’s 551st Parachute Battalion and, after disputes with the French had removed the two French parachute battalions that had originally to have been involved, Brigadier C. H. V. Pritchard’s British 2nd Parachute Brigade. In ‘Dove’ some 3,000 airborne troops and critical heavier equipment and weapons were delivered in 300 gliders to land to the rear of the main beach landing areas in the area of Le Muy and Le Luc, and reinforce the paratroopers delivered in ‘Rugby’.

The airborne soldiers later linked with Major General Fred L. Walker’s 36th Division of Major General Lucian K. Truscott’s VI Corps within Lieutenant General Alexander M. Patch’s US 7th Army after ensuring that the inland road between Cannes and the Marseille area was available to the advancing Americans and French without demolitions by the retreating forces Generalleutnant Friedrich Wiese’s 19th Army within Generaloberst Johannes Blaskowitz’s Heeresgruppe ‘G’.