La Fière


The Combat at the La Fière Bridge
For the parachutists of 82nd Airborne, the fighting at La Fière Bridge began on 6th June and doubled in intensity on 7th June and continued until 9th June. It was vital to hold the bridge and the raised causeway crossing the valley, which had been flooded by the River Merderet, in order to prevent the German forces advancing on Sainte-Mère-Eglise. The troops also had to take a foothold on the far bank to make the junction with the airborne troops who had been dropped further west well behind the enemy lines. On 7th June, following a heavy artillery barrage, the Germans recommenced their assault but, 1st Battalion of 505th Regiment resisted and held the bridge. The combat at La Fière continued for a further two days and only finally ended on 9th June when General Gavin, deputy commander of 82nd Division, led troops of 507th Regiment and 325th Glider Infantry Regiment in seizing the village of Cauquigny, which led on to the Causeway at La Fière but, with heavy losses on both sides.