World War II veteran skydives, 74 years after flying into Normandy

A World War II veteran has taken his second leap of faith, 74 years after answering the call when he landed at Normandy.

Harry Read, a 94-year-old war veteran, hadn't attempted a parachute jump since 1944, but as he took to the skies again, he was undaunted about what was about to happen.

Freefalling over Wiltshire, England, Mr Read may have been attached to a skydiving instructor this time, but that is a far cry from when he threw himself into the unknown as a soldier over Normandy, armed with a gun and calling on reserves of courage few could comprehend.

He was just a 20-year-old Army wireless operator when he took that leap of faith at 12:50am - a fall that took just 30 seconds.

Another stark contrast was that when Mr Read flew down into Normandy he was met with enemy gun fire. But this time he was just met with cameras and smiles.

"We had come into the most amazing anti-aircraft fire that it could be imagined - tracer bullets, shells exploding, the aircraft rocking like crazy," he said.

This jump was to help raise money for Salvation Army, and he seemed to think it was a worthwhile experience.

"It was quite enjoyable... and I want you to know I brought this man down safely," he said, humorously signalling to the instructor.

Mr Read wants to do it again next year, but at Normandy, on the 75th anniversary of D-Day.

ITV News