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This is a teachable moment as the saying goes.  Attached is the Example Basic Training then Paratroop Training in a pdf file.

Eugene A. Cook Jr. had lied for years saying he was in Normandy during the invasion as a member of Company A of the 506th Parachute Infantry 101st Airborne Division.  The only true fact is that his name was Eugene A. Cook Jr.  He wasnít in Normandy as a paratrooper in the 506th Parachute Infantry.  Iíve watched some of his interviews on YouTube and he tells a hell of a story but thatís all it is, a story. 

There is a real paratrooper named Eugene N. Cook who did go into Normandy on June 6, 1944.  Private Cook was a member of Company D 502nd Parachute Infantry 101st Airborne Division. 

It seems at some point that the fake Eugene A. Cook Jr. took the exploits of the real Private Cook from Co D and made it his own.    He just chanced the unit to Company A 506th Parachute Infantry.  It has happened before and here is a link

Here is where the teachable moment comes in.  Attached to this narrative is the documentation explaining why the fake Cook couldnít have been in Normandy in WWII as a paratrooper.  The fake Cook joined the Army February 14, 1944 in Ohio (Pg 4) and claims that he then went to Normandy in time for the invasion on June 6, 1944.  The only problem with that is he wasnít in Company A 506th Parachute Infantry May 31, 1944 (Pg 6).  He would have been listed between the two men highlighted in pink.   

The real Eugene Cook first joined the service on December 17, 1940.  If you look at the Payroll Records for May 31, 1944 (Pg 3) it shows him in Co D of the 502nd.  Please look at the following column Date of Enlistment (Pg 3).  The real Cook had been there for almost 3 Ĺ years before Normandy (Pg 1). 

Here is a breakdown of a soldier from the day he joined the Army until the day he became a paratrooper (Pgs 7-25).  There will always be a cover sheet that matches up with the documentation when possible.

Robert Nobles joined the Army October 7, 1942 (Pg 8).  Nobles arrived at Camp Blanding October 20, 1942 (Pg 9) where his basic training would take place.  His basic training started on November 1, 1942 (Pg 10) and fan through February 1, 1943 (Pgs 11-20).

Private Nobles and the rest of the 508th Parachute Infantry then went to Fort Benning and started parachute training February 8, 1943 (Pg 20) to February 27, 1943 where he received his Jump Wings (Pg 22).

The last piece of the puzzle was to leave the States and arrive in Europe.  Private First Class Nobles left New York City, New York December 28, 1943 (Pg 23) and arrived in Europe January 8, 1944 (Pg 24). 

So here is the breakdown for the time it takes from start to finish to becoming a paratrooper.

7 days to get to the camp for his basic training, then 10 more days until it started.  Then

3 months to the day to finish basic training.  Then 3 more weeks to graduate and become a paratrooper and then the actual sailing to Europe that took 10 days.  This doesnít count the movements between stations either.  From Camp Blanding to Fort Benning then Fort Benning to Camp Mackall. 

All totaled that is 3 months for basic training, which puts him the middle of May.  Then three weeks to become a paratrooper which puts him in the second week of June.  Then 10 days to get to Europe.  That would put him there at the end of June 1944.  This is if he started his training the second day he enlisted.  That would usually take between 2-3 weeks.  That would put him there in at the end of July 1944.

What this really means is the fake Cook from Ohio couldnít have been in Normandy in the 506th.  The Payroll records for Co A are the first exhibit showing he wasnít there on May 31, 1944 for the Payroll Records and he wasnít in Morning Reports for June & July either. 

Fake Cook wasnít in Normandy with the 506th, in fact there is no record in any of the General Orders for the 506th that he was ever in that Regiment. 

Michel De Trez was able to locate Cooks 53-55 Discharge Paperwork.  Cook didn't go overseas in March of 1944, but 1945.  It turns out he lied for years saying he lost his discharge. 

Brian Siddall

March 6, 2017





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