The following photos, donated to the author by 555 trooper
Ken Floyd, offer an amazing view of post-war service
in the Triple Nickles, America's first African-American
Paratrooper unit. The elite 555 was the first African-American
unit to break the Army's color barrier.
stunning shot of 555 troopers in a
practice jump at Fort Bragg.
Pvt. Ken Floyd recovering his chute during a
training jump at Fort Benning.
Trooper James Williams makes a safe landing during jump school.
It wasn't all work at Fort Bragg. A 555 trooper presides
over a beauty contest held on the post.
Company Clowns observed
by Sgt. Clyde Thomas (Rear) 1947.
The 555 band, a hit both on and off post.
Sgt. Thomas and his bride.
The wedding of Sgt. Clyde Thomas to Vandallia Cogsdale.
Every Thanksgiving she would prepare a
holiday dinner for the NCOs of 555th.
C Company boarding a C82 for a training exercise that would prove to be deadly. In the exercise, the Air Force was tasked with dropping naphthalene canisters on a mock enemy position. Yet the Airforce miscalculated and dropped their deadly load on the 555, resulting in two fatalities and several severe injuries. The tragedy would be repeated in a similar 555 exercise at Eglin Field.
C-82 transport planes discharge 555 troopers in Operation
Combine at Elgin Field, FL.