WWII, 82nd Airborne Division and today

This is the next generation of the 82nd Airborne Division in our family, Matthew Bednarski. He has earned the title of 82nd Airborne Division Paratrooper Bednarski. Matthew is attached to the same Company as my Father in 1942, 82nd Airborne Division, 505, 3 BCT He had a picture of my father in his top jumpsuit pocket for all 5 jumps. The photo is from the historical WW2 paratrooper book “They Are Only Gone IF They Are Forgotten”


WW2 Living history Day at Kinga Mountain NC Historical Museum

I will be attending the WWII Living History Day. Signed and serialized copies of the book “They Are Only Gone IF They Are Forgotten” will be for sale. All of you reenactors come by and meet me. I would like to get your contact information as we will be planning on needing reenactors when we are going to produce the sizzle reel for the movie venue. The event is being held at 100 E Mountain St, Kings Mountain, NC 28086, USA……..Thank you for your time in this matter.
Steve Zaley author “They Are Only Gone If They Are Forgotten”

82nd Airborne Division Paratrooper KIA in WWII

A picture of Hector Duquette

After 20 years of searching off and on for the family of 82nd Airborne Division, 505 Combat Team Paratrooper Hector Duquette who was KIA in Holland, I finally contacted them. They had no idea that he is considered a Hero in Holland for his actions that led to the death of many enemy soldiers. His actions also saved the lives of many of his fellow paratroopers…  We are still looking for the families of the other 30 paratroopers that we could never find. I will be posting their names and what part of the country they enlisted from.

82nd Airborne Podcast

Steve Zaley spent three decades listening to his father’s stories about fighting in World War II with the 82nd Airborne Division’s 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment.  He spent another twenty years writing a full anthology about his father’s experience.  The book, “They Are Only Gone If They Are Forgotten,” is the subject of the Senior Radio in Buffalo NY.

Steve Zaley talks on Buffalo Senior Radio – WBENAM – Feb 16, 2019

Steve walks in his father’s shoes, taking us through the formation of th 505th in 1942, then onto North Africa, Sicily, Normany, and Holland.  D Day, Operation Market Garden, the Battle of the Bulge: his father was actually there.  This a story Steve simply had to tell and we’re glad he did. We must forever maintain the legacy of the men who defeated Nazsim and kept Europe free.

Steve Zaley talks on Buffalo Senior Radio – WBENAM – Feb 23, 2019

Special thanks to Buffalo Senior Radio Station WBENA for allowing us to post an excerpt from their podcast which can be heard in it’s entirety here. Feb 16, 2019 & Feb 23, 2019

The Inspiration

Stephen Michael Zaley
The Author’s father: Stephen Michael Zaley

The Paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne Division were feared by an enemy who would defy the spearhead of the world power; yet the same paratroopers the enemy feared would be welcome into the homes of the people who waited patiently and silently for their own rescue.  No other fighting unit in World War II could equal the accomplishments of the 505th Combat Team of the 82nd Airborne Division.

K9 Qualifies As Paratrooper

There was only one dog that was a qualified paratrooper in 1942-1943. He was a 90 lb Boxer named Max. The parachute riggers designed a special harness for him and he was fitted with a cargo chute. Colonel Gavin in charge of the Combat Team said Paratroopers are strictly volunteered, he jumps on his own and is not to be thrown out of the airplane. Max wanted everyone to know he was made of the right stuff, full of piss and vinegar, just like the paratroopers he hung out with. Being one of the guys Max also picked up a few paratroopers bad habits. Max was becoming quite the celebrity with the newsreels and selling war bonds. He was a member of the 505th Combat Team. The 505th Combat Team set many first precedents and Max was proud to be one of them. The book, They Are Only Gone If They Are Forgotten is the only book that covers Max’s complete story.