The parachute leaps, Churchill said, were ‘quite the most remarkable I ever seen.’ A high wind, upon which those staging the battle had not counted, made them hazardous in the extreme. Chutists were tossed about like leaved in a gale.
Equipped with a ‘walkie-talkie’ - a small portable radio - Churchill heard the fierce battle cry, ‘Geronimo’ given by each paratrooper as he jumped at low altitude.
Sometimes the chute opened dangerously near the ground and the trooper landed with a thump. Once Churchill exclaimed with concern when a parachutist landed in front of the reviewing stand and lay stunned for a moment. He nodded approvingly as the soldier shook his head, scrambled to his feet and ran to join his combat unit.1