Seventy-five years ago today — D-Day, June 6, 1944 — the Allies landed around 156,000 troops in Normandy, 73,000 of whom were American. That successful invasion was a key turning point in quelling Adolph Hitler’s quest for world domination.
It would do us all some good to put ourselves in the place of the person who took the first picture shown above [sequence is left to right]. Knowing that in the next few seconds the door would swing down and we’d see the next scene, we’d be acutely aware that our very-near-term future could be the path depicted by the third and fourth scenes.
As I mentioned in my recent post on Memorial Day, in all of many international travels my wife and I have had the privilege of enjoying over the past twenty-plus years, seeing the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial [above pic taken by me] and nearby Omaha Beach [the worst of the landing areas where scenes like the photo sequence above unfolded that day] was one of the most memorable and moving experiences for me. The cemetery covers 172.5 acres and contains 9,388 graves.
I highly recommend watching this video clip [a little less than six minutes] of the opening scenes of Saving Private Ryan [warning — very unpleasant imagery:] Clip From Saving Private Ryan. I was never in the military, but I expect that part of that film depicts about as accurately as possible the carnage suffered on our behalf by thousands of our fellow Americans — and thousands of citizens of the other Allied nations — on D-Day. We should never forget what they did for us.
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Charles M. Jones