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D-Day
Special Interest
Your task will not be an easy one! - Dwight D. Eisenhower

When: June 6th

Where: United States

Traditional Celebration Ideas

Visit a museum and find a display with photos and descriptions of the Normandy Landings.  Talk with fathers and grandfathers that might have a personal story told to them by a friend or family member who was involved in D-Day to help gain a understanding of the sacrifices made.

Numbers

In one of the most devastating battles in the history of war, over 4,414 allies died in the Normandy Landings on what is also referred to as D-Day. 

Description

In order to liberate the French from German occupation in World War II, the largest military attack ever launched from the sea was carried out on June 6, 1944 by the Allied forces. Codenamed Operation Neptune, five beachheads were established for the invasion Normandy, France by the Allies. One of the most famous depictions of the assault on Omaha Beach comes from Steven Spielberg's move "Saving Private Ryan".  The film was based on a true story, and captures the raw emotion, fear, chaos and bloodshed that occurred on a beach in northern France on that day in our world history.  In coordination with the French Resistance, British and Canadian forces joined the U.S in carrying out the Normandy Landings at the following established beaches: Utah, Omaha, Juno, Sword,  and Gold Beach and were key to the eventual Allied Forces Victory.

Interesting Facts

  1. The Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial is maintained by the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) which manages 26 overseas military cemeteries abroad.  It was established for honoring those who sacrificed and served on behalf of the United States of America.
  2. In 1942, Germany constructed the "Atlantic Wall", a 2,400-mile network of bunkers, mines and landing obstacles up and down the French coastline that was meant to defend against a possible Allied forces invasion.
  3. A number of marine tanks that were meant to provide crucial support to the Allies, sunk in the stormy waters.
  4. One of the most horrific moments of the D-Day Invasion was when the landing craft coxswain's gave the orders to lower the vessels ramp.  The ramp while in the upright position was serving as a shield for the troops and as soon as it was lowered numerous soldiers were struck by bullets and killed instantly.
  5. The total calculation of all those who died at D-Day is still disputed by some historians and is still a work in progress to find the most accurate total.

 

Information

Observed:
  • June 6th
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