To most people, when one talks of D-Day, images come to mind of grainy black-and-white photographs and newsreel footage of men in Higgins boats as they prepared to hit the beaches of France’s Normandy coast.
But to the remaining veterans from that fateful day, June 6, 1944 is still emblazoned in their minds in vivid color, with all the accompanying noise, terror, fear and adrenaline remaining just below the surface of their otherwise calm exteriors. That landing, and the battles in the days that followed to secure the beachhead, represented a turning point in the war. Yes, there would be tough fights ahead, both in Europe and the South Pacific, but from that day on, the end of the Third Reich and the Japanese empire was an eventual certainty. It required the largest amphibious invasion the world has ever seen to get that done.
As the Gazette-Journal commemorates the 69th anniversary of that epic battle, we take time to remember the soldiers and sailors whose sacrifices made...
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