1st Edition HB 1978 118 Pages
Hardback with dustjacket. First published in the UK by "Imperial War Museum" in 1978.
Printed by "W & J Mackay & Co. Ltd.". Written by James Sims. ISBN number 0901627100.
Foreword by Maj.-Gen. John Frost. This remarkable book is the only memoir of Arnhem
to have come from the pen of a private soldier. As the author's former CO and one of
the heroes of Arnhem, Maj.-Gen. John Frost observes in his Foreword:
"It is a most vivid moving personal account which should be of great interest, for
there are few such written by young soldiers about the last war." Sims was only 19
and had never seen action when, on 17 September 1944, as part of the 1st British
Airborne Division he was dropped 6 miles behind the German lines outside an obscure
Dutch town called Arnhem. His unit, the 2nd Battalion The Parachute Regiment, managed
to reach its objective, the huge steel bridge which spanned the Lower Rhine, but was
soon engaged by powerful German forces, whose presence in the area had been insufficiently
appreciated. Cut off from the rest of the Division, the men of the 2nd Battalion and
elements of other units held the northern end of the bridge for 3 days and 4 nights
against repeated attacks by German infantry and armour. When the exhausted defenders
were finally overwhelmed they had almost no ammunition left and the cellars of the few
shattered buildings that they still occupied were overflowing with wounded, among whom
was the author. James Sims describes the ordeal which he and his companions underwent simply,
modestly and with genuine compassion.