John Harold Cushing enlisted into the Green Howards and served with the 10th (East Riding Yeomanry) Battalion. In May 1943 the Battalion was renamed the 12th (Yorkshire) Parachute Battalion and turned over to airborne duties forming part of the 5th Parachute Brigade within the 6th Airborne Division.
Corporal Cushing attended parachute training course 69 at RAF Ringway which ran from 21 June to 1 July 1943. The course cadre comprised of 15 Officers and 163 Other Ranks from the Battalion. The men completed 1,257 jumps; 13 Officers and 137 Other Ranks. The course instructors’ notes record’ Cpl Cushing. Hard working. Average ability.'
Cpl Cushinhg parachuted into Normandy with the Battalion on D-Day 6 June 1944. The 12th Battalion captured Ranville despite its scattered drop and held it against repeated German counter-attacks as well as relieving the glider borne elements at Pegasus Bridge. It fought around Breville and formed part of the break-out to the Seine with the 6th Airborne Division in August, after which it was returned to England.
Cpl Cushing fought with the Battalion during the winter of 1944-5 fighting in the Ardennes during the Battle of the Bulge and Operation VARSITY fighting to secure the Rhine Crossings and the Advance to the Baltic.
He went to the Far East and Palestine before being demobbed in January 1947.