This story was based loosely on the Niland Brothers. They were four American brothers from Tonawanda, New York, serving in the military during World War II. Of the four, two survived the war, but for a time it was believed that only one, Frederick Niland, had survived. Frederick was sent back to the United States to complete his service, and only later learned that his brother Edward, presumed dead, was actually captive in a Japanese POW camp in Burma.
Since watching the movie and having the 1/6 scale 12-inch version of Tom Hanks as Captain John H Miller, Commanding Officer of C Company, 2nd Ranger Battalion (pictures here), Private Ryan has been the one to get. And finally, with Toys City WWII US 101st Airborne Division Uniform and Accessory Set (see previous post) and a Matt Damon head sculpt bought earlier, I was able to kitbash a 1/6 scale 12-inch version of Matt Damon as Private James Ryan of Baker Company, 1st Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division :)
This likeness of Matt Damon is much better as Private Ryan than Jason Bourne. For 1/6 scale 12-inch pictures of Jason Bourne, check out the link here.
Ryan in his M1942 parachutist jacket with waist belt (Toys City's quality is really quite good)
M1942 parachutist trousers and Corcoran jump boots.
Private Ryan all geared up and mission ready
He is equipped with M1 ammunition bandolier, M1923 small arms ammunition pouches aka cartridge belt, M1936 suspenders, M1910 Canteen with cover, M1 bayonet, M43 Entrenching tool with cover, M1942 First Aid pouch, Ammo Bag.
Private Ryan with his M1 Garand rifle
The Sole Survivor Policy describes a set of regulations in the US military that are designed to protect members of a family from the draft or combat duty if they have already lost family members in military service. The need for the regulations first caught public attention after all five Sullivan brothers were killed when the USS Juneau (CL-52) was sunk during World War II on November 13, 1942.
Ryan and his Airborne buddies on June 5, 1944 - getting ready for the big day (link here)