Remembering June 6, 1944

Published 11:21 am Saturday, June 7, 2014

On June 6, 1944, 156,000 Allied troops landed on the beaches in Normandy, France. This massive wave of military might, comprised primarily of British, Canadian and American personnel, had one mission: to save the world.

Of the 73,000 Americans who participated in that day’s maneuvers, the U.S. National D-Day Memorial Foundation has identified 2,499 who lost their lives. Another 1,914 troops from Allied nations died that day as well. By the time the Battle of Normandy ended that August, over 50,000 Allied troops, including nearly 10,000 Americans, had been killed.

There are no words to adequately describe the courage of those who participated in D-Day 70 years ago. Many of the brave souls who would bail out of amphibious troop transports to storm the beaches faced certain death.

Their willingness to do it anyway ultimately guaranteed that Hitler would be defeated, led to the end of World War II, ensured America’s place as a leader among nations and caused their generation to be known, rightly, as America’s greatest.