Freedom Fighters: Ted Heller

BULLARD, TX (KLTV) - By Joan Hallmark - bio | email

BULLARD, TX (KLTV) - The Battle of Normandy, or D-Day, remains the largest air and sea invasion in history, involving nearly three million troops crossing the English Channel from England to France. Ted Heller became part of history on June 6th of 1944 as he piloted a group of paratroopers into France.

Heller's next troop mission was the ill fated Market Garden invasion of Holland. The book and movie "A Bridge Too Far" tells the story of the failed mission, which Heller describes as "too many bridges too late." Heller attributes the failure to the dense English fog which delayed the arrival of the second and third groups of paratroopers until it was too late.

The mission almost turned out to be ill fated for Heller and his crew as well. On the way back from the mission, Heller's plane was caught once again in thick fog and with six hits to his plane and without a navigator, only luck brought him back safely.

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