Among the Firsts: Lieutenant Colonel Gerhard L. Bolland's Unconventional War

D-Day 82nd Airborne Paratrooper, OSS Special Forces Commander of Operation Rype

Matthew T Bolland

The story of the doubly pioneering Lt Col Gerhard L. Bolland—82nd Airborne paratrooper on D-Day and senior OSS field operative on Operation Rype.
Date Published :
May 2022
Publisher :
Illustration :
Photographs and maps
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Binding. : Hardback
ISBN : 9781636241210
Pages : 384
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
Stock Status : In stock
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In his own words, the war of the doubly pioneering Lt Col Gerhard L. Bolland—82nd Airborne paratrooper on D-Day and senior OSS field operative on Operation Rype.

Unconventional warfare tactics can have a considerable effect on the outcome of any war. During World War II, the United States government developed and employed two new methods of fighting. The first was the development of "paratroop" units, as they were first called. The second was the formation of a covert and sabotage operations branch called the Office of Strategic Services (OSS). Lt. Colonel Bolland was involved in both of these "firsts." During the D-Day invasion he parachuted behind enemy lines, jumping out of the 82nd Airborne lead aircraft with General James Gavin. After fighting with the 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment for thirty-three days straight, he returned to England and became involved with the OSS Scandinavian Section. He served as Field Commander for their Operation, code named Rype. This was the only American military undertaking, albeit covert, in Norway during the entire course of the war.

As a young boy growing up in rural western Minnesota, Bolland got his military start with the Minnesota National Guard, before being accepted to West Point, solely on merit. His military career lasted seventeen years. Lt. Colonel Bolland ended up with numerous decorations including the Norwegian Liberation Medal and Citation, the Bronze Star for valor, the French Fouragerre of Croix de Guerre with Palms and posthumously the Congressional Gold medal awarded to the OSS Society on behalf of all former OSS members that served during the war.

His story reveals the struggles, successes, failures and ultimate victories, detailing what went right and what went wrong with these new unconventional methods of fighting.

About The Author

Matthew T. Bolland holds a biochemistry degree from the University of Wisconsin (Madison) including graduate level course work. He has co-authored papers related to recombinant DNA technology. His career has involved working with various government agencies including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). He serves on various standards development committees and holds ten patents, six U.S. and four Canadian, either as co-inventor or sole inventor for products related to the consumer end-use market.



Chapter 1. A Changing Scene
Chapter 2. The Making of a Paratrooper
Chapter 3. Battle Experience, D-Day Invasion with the 82nd Airborne
Chapter 4. The British Temperament
Chapter 5. The Norwegian Temperament
Chapter 6. Norwegian-American Roots of the Bolland Family
Chapter 7. German Subterfuge
Chapter 8. Norwegian Resistance
Chapter 9. OSS Beginnings, Background and History
Chapter 10. Prelude to a Mission
Chapter 11. The Scandinavian Section, OSS London
Chapter 12. The Inception and Importance of Operation RYPE
Chapter 13. Meeting the NORSO Group Personnel
Chapter 14. NORSO Beginnings
Chapter 15. Operation Rype Preparation
Chapter 16. Carpetbaggers
Chapter 17. Operation Rype
Chapter 18. Spies through Sweden
Chapter 19. Impending Victory
Chapter 20. Capturing the German Airport Trondheim Fjord
Chapter 21. NORSO’s Final Days
Chapter 22. Liberation
Chapter 23. Bon Voyage, Back to the United States
Chapter 24. Closing Military Endeavors—Korea and Japan

Supplemental Documents and Photos
Epilogue: Congressional Gold Medal


"Lt. Gen. Boland’s immortal bequests are alive for all to ponder, among them the solid judgment, character, and bravery to lead men and women in battle."


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