SSG Othis Columbus Shepherd
Service Company, REGT, 506th PIR
1942-1944, KIA 06/06/44

In 1940 the US War Department authorized the development of the 1st Parachute Battalion (soon after to be re-designated the 501st Parachute Battalion). In 1941 the 501st Parachute Battalion was moved to the Panama Canal Zone to reinforce defenses. After the December 7, 1941 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, C Company, 501st Parachute Battalion, was moved to Rio Hata, Panama Canal Zone to guard the airport.

On July 20, 1942, the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment was activated at Camp Toccoa, GA, and some paratroopers, including Othis Columbus Shepherd, were reassigned from the 501st to the 506th. Other members of the 506th PIR who first served in the 501st Parachute Battalion include LTG(R) Robert F. Sink (Regimental Commander, 506th PIR); David M. "Buck" Rogers (1SG, HQ, 1st BN, 506th PIR); and CWO2(R) Woodrow H. Smith (G Co, 3rd BN, 506th PIR, 1942-1945; POW Jun 44-Apr 45)

photos from Susan Shepherd Eady, second cousin of
SSG Othis Columbus Shepherd (SVC, 506th PIR, KIA D-Day)

SSG Shepherd

SSG Othis Columbus Shepherd

Shepherd and Davidson

(L-R): Othis Columbus Shepherd and James Leonard Davidson at Rio Hata, Panama Canal Zone.

Othis Shepherd became a Supply Sergeant in the Service Company, REGT, 506th PIR, and was
KIA D-Day in Normandy. He is buried in the Normandy American Cemetery.

James Davidson became a SGT in the 3rd Battalion Section, Demolition Platoon, REGT, 506th PIR,
and was
KIA 09/19/44 in Holland. The Demolition Platoon ("Filthy 13") is chronicled in the book,
The Filthy 13, from the Dustbowl to Hitler's Eagle's Nest, the 101st Airborne's Most Legendary Squad
of Combat Paratroopers: the True Story of "The Dirty Dozen"

Rio Hata, Canal Zone

Rio Hata, Canal Zone

See below for the names of the paratroopers in this photo.

Back of photo

Back of photo

These pages are maintained the
506th Airborne Infantry Regiment Association (Airmobile - Air Assault)
This page updated 04/06/13