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FSSF Grouping (with Canadian jump wings) - real?


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#26 Johan Willaert

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Posted 01 February 2008 - 10:34 AM

What color of beret would that Canadian Officer have worn?

#27 Allan H.

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Posted 03 February 2008 - 06:46 AM

What color of beret would that Canadian Officer have worn?


Johan,
The beretss were maroon and were never authorized when the Canadians were still assigned to the FSSF> It was only after the Force was deactivated and the Canadians sent to a replacement pool that the berets came out. The Canadian paras of the FSSF had not worn berets like other para qualified Canadians had throughout the war, so they were eager to take on the distinctive headgear. As they were not a part of the Canadian Parachute Battalion, the only distinctive or regimental insignia available was (were?) the crossed arrows.

Of course, when "The Devil's Brigade" was filmed, William Holden and the rest of the actors wore berets throughoutthe movie, but it is not historically accurate.
Allan

#28 Johan Willaert

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Posted 03 February 2008 - 08:11 AM

Thanks Allan

#29 Camp_Kearny

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Posted 23 February 2009 - 10:01 PM

I stumbled into this thread while searching for some information of the 1st Special Service Force. This last weekend, I was given an arrowhead patch and a red beret from the the son of a vet. He showed me the rest of his father's insignia (which he is keeping) and there was both the US and Canadian jump wings. He did not want to keep any of the uniforms so he gave me the patch, the beret, and two beat up officer pattern khaki shirts. His father trained with the force in Montana and took part in the Kiska Operation but was badly injured in a training accident after Kiska and was returned to the states. He spent the rest of the war as a criminal/CI investigator (his son said he was a CID investigator but I think he may have been CIC as there was some paperwork from Camp Holabird and some restricted CI coursework).

The patch is pretty standard and I saw pictures of him as an enlistedman wearing the officer style khaki shirts while carrying an A2 so I am fairly certain those are all good, but the beret is a mystery. It is a bright red, almost orange and it has the crossed arrow insignia. Was the beret a wartime item or was it a later veterans item or completely unrelated to the unit and a put together by the vet? Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Ian

#30 Cobrahistorian

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 01:33 PM

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Hey guys,

The cord is a campaign hat cord, not a shoulder cord, and NOT FSSF. We've seen a few of those surface recently and while I am not remembering the significance of that particular cord, I know for certain it has nothing to do with the FSSF. I'm also getting a bit of a fishy feeling about the crossed arrows. Not 100% on that, but they look a lot like the pair I've got in the trade forum right now. Length of the arrows just don't look right. I've got one original crossed arrow in my collection and they are significantly larger than those that are available these days. I'll scan my original tonight. The patches all look legit to me.

Jon

Founding member First Special Service Force Living History Group

Edited by Cobrahistorian, 24 February 2009 - 01:35 PM.


#31 Cobrahistorian

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 02:17 PM

Hey guys,

The cord is a campaign hat cord, not a shoulder cord, and NOT FSSF. We've seen a few of those surface recently and while I am not remembering the significance of that particular cord, I know for certain it has nothing to do with the FSSF. I'm also getting a bit of a fishy feeling about the crossed arrows. Not 100% on that, but they look a lot like the pair I've got in the trade forum right now. Length of the arrows just don't look right. I've got one original crossed arrow in my collection and they are significantly larger than those that are available these days. I'll scan my original tonight. The patches all look legit to me.

Jon

Founding member First Special Service Force Living History Group


Just remembered, that's a CMTC campaign hat cord, not FSSF.

#32 doyler

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 04:50 PM

Just remembered, that's a CMTC campaign hat cord, not FSSF.



See post #8

#33 doyler

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 04:55 PM

I stumbled into this thread while searching for some information of the 1st Special Service Force. This last weekend, I was given an arrowhead patch and a red beret from the the son of a vet. He showed me the rest of his father's insignia (which he is keeping) and there was both the US and Canadian jump wings. He did not want to keep any of the uniforms so he gave me the patch, the beret, and two beat up officer pattern khaki shirts. His father trained with the force in Montana and took part in the Kiska Operation but was badly injured in a training accident after Kiska and was returned to the states. He spent the rest of the war as a criminal/CI investigator (his son said he was a CID investigator but I think he may have been CIC as there was some paperwork from Camp Holabird and some restricted CI coursework).

The patch is pretty standard and I saw pictures of him as an enlistedman wearing the officer style khaki shirts while carrying an A2 so I am fairly certain those are all good, but the beret is a mystery. It is a bright red, almost orange and it has the crossed arrow insignia. Was the beret a wartime item or was it a later veterans item or completely unrelated to the unit and a put together by the vet? Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Ian


Very common for vets to pick up berets and wear them for reunions,parades etc.Especially with in the last 10 -15 years.Look at the photos of the Ranger re-unions,and various monument dedications both airborne or Ranger and you will see many WW2 vets in berets.

RON

#34 J_Andrews

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:09 PM

That red beret sounds like the style that was CREATED for the filming of themovie "Devil's Brigade" in the 1960s. IIRC 1SSF vets at the premier wore such funny hats; the veterans may have continued the practice in later years, The movie version had the crossed arrows pinner on a black "tombstone" flash.

BTW re the picture of the group on Commonwealth officers in their service dress: It seems inconceivable that a Candian officer would be wearing no cap badge for his parent REGIMENT, as several of the others in the picture are doing. He is wearing "CANADA" SHOULDER brasses on his collars. Even if he could not find his proper parent regiment's items, he could have surely scrounged up the collar and cap badges for the Canadian General Service Corps (maple leafs). Very strange...... Has a "ringer" image been photoshopped into the legit group photo?

In the ZI even, Canadian officers wore their Regimental (parent) badges on headgear and collars -- PLUS the crossed arrows on lapels. This applied to both British-pattern Service Dress and U.S. pattern Shade 51 coats.

#35 Cobrahistorian

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:16 PM

See post #8



Gotcha, guess I missed that one. Here's my $.02 on the arrows. The upper arrows are modern SF arrows, the lower ones are originals.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v247/cobrahistorian/P2242301.jpg

Is it just me, or are the ones in the initial question very similar to the upper set?

As a side note, the Force was disbanded on 5 December 44 in Menton, France. They didn't make it to January 45 as a unit.

Jon

Edited by Cobrahistorian, 24 February 2009 - 05:27 PM.


#36 Tino

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:31 PM

Speaking of hat cords http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/w00t.gif watch for these cords to be used and transformed into original FSSF hats as soon as the seamstres is done with them.
They will either be on ebay soon or saved for the SOS
http://cgi.ebay.com/...em=300289044983
and
http://cgi.ebay.com/...em=140299417500
FSSF buyers be aware!

Also check out this thread, it's the same guy
http://www.usmilitar...showtopic=36089

#37 doyler

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:32 PM

Cobra,

I agree on the arrows.I have a set from a vet that are not matching but he got them at Ft.Harrison during the war and sent them back to his wife.She wore them on her jacket at he place of work.

RON

#38 Cobrahistorian

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:47 PM

Speaking of hat cords http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/w00t.gif watch for these cords to be used and transformed into original FSSF hats as soon as the seamstres is done with them.
They will either be on ebay soon or saved for the SOS
http://cgi.ebay.com/...em=300289044983
and
http://cgi.ebay.com/...em=140299417500
FSSF buyers be aware!

Also check out this thread, it's the same guy
http://www.usmilitar...showtopic=36089


The cap piping on that is not the same type as the FSSF used. Where that is pretty much like a barber pole, the FSSF was speckled red/blue flashes through a white cord. I will say that there IS a roll of the original piping out there.

Edited by Cobrahistorian, 24 February 2009 - 06:13 PM.


#39 Cobrahistorian

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Posted 25 February 2009 - 06:55 AM

Just thinking about the berets. From what the veterans have told us, those Canadian vets that went back to 1 Can Para wore crossed arrows on their Canadian para berets. It wasn't universally done, but several veterans have told us it did happen. They also wore the FSSF patch on their right shoulder, US-style. Can I say definitively that no US Forceman ever wore a beret? No, but the chances are almost nil.

From what I have seen, Officer's crossed arrows were either marked "N.S. Meyer" on one line, with "New York" below it, or they were unmarked. I have never seen an original set marked with anything else. I'm going from memory here, but I believe in Todd Ross' "Supercommandos", he shows a pair of lugback, British (Canadian?) made officer's arrows. Those were definitely an anomaly, but they are legit.

CANADA collar disks were screwback only, and I believe the crossed arrows disks were as well. We made a run of repro disks a few years ago that are clutchback and clearly say REPRODUCTION across the back of them. They were struck from original disks, so are pretty dead-on. If you see a clutchback disk, it is a repro.

#40 doyler

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Posted 10 March 2009 - 04:09 PM

Here is a picture of a WW2 Canadian uniform showing former service with the First Special Service Force.I do not own this uniform and at the time the picture was given to me it was still owned by the veteran.

I just wanted to show how the Force patch was worn by this individual and how things are always not regulation when it comes to veterans and there uniforms.I do have a US ike to a local area Force vet and he has his patch on the lower cuff as he had seen service with two other divisions prior to discharge.

Thanks for looking

RD

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Edited by doyler, 10 March 2009 - 04:09 PM.


#41 Force136

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 12:06 PM

This pic might help to answer that question.

This is a Canadian officer with both wings. So it might have gone both ways.

MVC-0hh09S.jpg

 

Hi

 

I am wondering if any of you guys can tell me where this photo originated from?

 

BTW - Noted the topic of this thread. Americans of the FSSF were not given Canadian wings during the war nor could they wear them on their uniforms. Canadians of the Force were permitted only to wear the US badge while serving with the Force. Some however applied Canadian badges unofficially which they purchased in Canada. Only men who were hurt bad enough to preclude further parachute training were permitted to wear the Canadian Parachute Badge under Canadian Routine Orders. Any wearing of both badges was against orders but it was frequently done when on leave. Canadians sometimes wore the Canadian badge in place of the US badge while in Canada. Officers also wore the Canadian badge in place of the US badge on their CANADIAN service dress. There were no dress regs written for the Force. I have published a book that explains all this ... Crimson Spearhead which can be acquired from Service Publications of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.



#42 doyler

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 05:41 PM

I have to disagree Alan.... the FSSF while in theater was getting replacements from various sources, disbanded Ranger battalions and also paratroopers direct from the Airborne school at Ft Benning. If you were a Forceman and you went through ANY jump training be it Canadian or US Army you would be entitled to wear both the Canadian and US jump wings.... just one of the benifits of being in a multi-national unit with no regulations to say otherwise. What happens today is a different story.... I wear both even though I only made one jump with the Canadians. My one jump was worth the usual three..... since it was in gusts up to 22-24 knots. :blink: The picture Mr-X posted says it all.

 

 

As far as replacements from an interview with one I personally met he told me he was taken out of a replacement pool.He was fresh from the states and in a pool in theatre.He was assinged as an "infantry replacement" prior to southern france invasion.He wasnt airborne qualed and never wore the winds.He did attend reunions after the war.Even there they had a seperation of men.THose who were original Force members and those who were replacements.




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