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Epitome Of Hell: D-Day Normandy Invasion June 6, 1944 – 65th Anniversary Ceremony

FREEDOM

BROTHERHOOD

SACRIFICE

VICTORY

June 6, 1944, 160,000 Allied troops landed along a 50-mile stretch of heavily-fortified French coastline to fight Nazi Germany on the beaches of Normandy, France.

General Dwight D. Eisenhower called the operation a crusade in which “we will accept nothing less than full victory.”

More than 5,000 ships and 13,000 aircraft supported the D-Day invasion, and by day’s end on June 6th, the Allies gained a foot- hold in Normandy.

The D-Day cost was high – more than 9,000 Allied Soldiers were killed or wounded — but more than 100,000 Soldiers began the march across Europe to defeat Hitler.

Today is the 65th Anniversary of the Normandy invasion. Here is a video of Normandy invasion clips and reflections of some of those brave soldiers who took part in the invasion and lived to tell about it … TRUE HEROES … Never Forget Them or those who did not return. The world we know today would not exist without their dedication to Freedom and their Sacrifice!

*** Turn The Volume On your Computer UP ***

We have a Saigon Kid at Normandy today – see “Comments” below to find out who and view pictures of the D-Day 65th Anniversary.

As always, you are welcome to leave your Comments below.

Bob

34 comments to Epitome Of Hell: D-Day Normandy Invasion June 6, 1944 – 65th Anniversary Ceremony

  • Frank

    Two days ago, we crossed the English channel from Portsmouth to Caen.

    Yesterday, was spent visiting the beaches of Normandy. American flags are flying on many of the French houses. We see a fine example of how tied our two countries really are.

    I’m sending pictures taken at the American Cemetery that is located above Omaha Beach. In honor of D-Day, every grave has a French and American flag.

    American Cemetery Above Omaha Beach

    Point du hoc…

    A person comes to France to learn about America!

    Point du hoc

    President Obama will be standing here soon.

    Omaha

    Setting Up – The row of chairs for D-Day Ceremony.

    Setting up chairs

    Site of first (temporary) American Cemetery in France of WW II.

    First American Cemetery - France

    “old soldiers never die…..they just….”

    American Cemetery - France

    Omaha Beach – Hopefully pictures are worth a thousand words.

    Omaha Beach

    This event is so fantastic!

    I have been at ste. Mere-eglise today … tons of people form several countrys … the flags are flying and everyone is celebrating.

    This year has had so much emotional “stuff” happen for me … after this trip, I’m going to stay home for awhile.

    Frank

  • Mimi

    Newspapers and TV stations have their “war correspondants”..are’nt we lucky,we have our very own “memory correspondant”!!! Thanks Frank for taking the time once again, to send your pics and thoughts.
    I watched the ceremony on tv…it is just terryfing to see all these white crosses,so so many, and to think that most of the kids burried there never had a life. Very moving!

    Frank are you there with your school children, or just visiting on your own.

    Enjoy and take care.
    mimi

  • randy seely

    Thanks for sending the pix, Frank…wonderful shots, indeed. I’m grateful for the sacrifices made by the allied troops…and it’s wonderful to see pictures depicting true appreciation there rather than the ‘weekend mattress special sales’ and ‘come-on-down-and-save-this-weekend-only- car sales! Bless you for the pictures and the reminder to us all of the sacrifices made by those wonderful heroes 65 years ago! God bless…and best wishes! Randy

  • Admin

    Mimi – Frank is there with his school children. He only has his Blackberry with him (no laptop). So I don’t know if he’ll be posting very much in ‘text form’ on here, etc.

    I’ll keep relaying whatever he emails to me over his Blackberry.

    “Memory Correspondant” – I LIKE THAT! Has a very nice ring to it! 🙂

    … and so fitting for Saigon Kids!

    And, yes Mimi it is terrifying to see all those crosses … fortunately my uncle survived the Normandy Invasion and WW II … but, he was never the same person when he returned from the war as he was before he left for the war – it changed him A LOT … just as it did my dad who fought in the Pacific and Southeast Asia in WW II. They left for the war as 17 and 18 year old kids and returned from the war as battle hardened combat veterans – from a war with only 2 tickets back home … in a body bag or win the war. I’ve often thought about what they must have been experienceing at about the same age I was while enjoying the good life in Saigon with all us Saigon Kids. How fortunate we are to have been born into the generation and time in history we were – compared to what previous generations had to endure …….

    Hugs to all
    Bob

  • Sarah Rogers

    Lovely and moving pictures Frank. Mahalo nui loa,
    Sarah

  • Admin

    Hold on to your seats people! You won’t believe where Frank is and what he sent this morning – totally AWESOME! I’ll be posting it here later today.

    French Saigon Kids – you are going to love this 🙂

    Think of the person who most influenced France, 2nd only to General de Gaulle – any guesses!?!

    More later today …

    Bob

  • Bobbie Sheehan Mauch

    Hi Frank!

    These pictures are beautiful and I thank you for sending them to us. You have been a “travelin man” lately. How wonderful to see the flags flying sise by side. Have a great trip.

  • Frank

    Sarah, Randy, Mimi and Bob … glad you enjoyed the photos. I should have taken more, but I got too caught up in events, and forgot to.

    We leave for Bastogne … battle of the Bulge Wednesday morning. Sarah, I’ll be thinking of your dad.

    Do you know where this picture is taken?

    Dalida - Paris

    This is all for now … this Blackberry is so hard for me to type with …

    Frank

  • Admin

    Yes, Frank I do know … LOL 🙂

    But, I’m not saying anything!!!

    Let’s see if anyone else knows.

    Totally AWESOME – Frank!!!

    Bob

  • Mimi

    Well, anyone who can read can tell…lol.
    But “second to gl de Gaulle”, I would have thought of Brigitte Bardot, not Dalida. Yes yes, I know you had a soft spot for Dalida-lol.

    Besides, you are right about these small keyboards. I have a 10 inch travel pc, it takes me 5 mns to write two words..lol.
    Try with a pencil..the ones whith an eraser at the end, sometimes it is easier. (you won’t get away from your reporting so easily..lol)

    Battle of the bulge…in french it is “bataille des Ardennes” for the mountains by the same name where it took place. Hope you and your school kids go by train. French trains are so much fun…cheap, fast, on time(when there are no strikes!). Too bad we let the trains down in north america.

    Bob, everything ok with you?

    hugs..mimi

  • randy seely

    The Montmartre, Paris. Wow, what a terrific journey you’re taking, Frank!

  • Susie Stann

    You go, Frank!

    You are one amazing man.

    Susie

  • Cathie

    That photo was taken in the Montmartre section of Paris. I always did enjoy Dalida’s songs . . .

    Cathie

  • Deb

    Punchbowl Cemetery? Where my parents are? Somewhere in Hawai’i, that’s for sure!
    Aloha,
    Deb

  • Cindy

    The picture was taken in Paris.

    Cindy

  • Jim

    Place Dalida – in Montmartre – named for Dalida, French singer of Egyptian Italian descent – toured Hong Kong and Vietnam in 1961.

    Jim

  • Admin

    Mimi – Eating garlic Mom!! – LOL – 🙂

    I’m fantastic – thank you for asking. How are you North Country Girl? Has it warmed up yet or are you still in the frozen North – lol

    A tidbit about Dalida: In 1988, The Encyclopedia Universalis commissioned a poll which was eventually published in daily newspaper Le Monde, the aim of which was to reveal personalities that had the greatest impact on French society. Dalida polled second, behind Général de Gaulle.

    Click here to view: Dalida – Born To Sing

    Ummmm … Mimi, the Cercle Sportif girls had Brigitt Bardot beat by a country mile … 🙂

    Does anyone recalling seeing Dalida when she toured Viet-nam in 1961? If so, do you have any pictures or memories to share with the rest of us?

    Rock on Saigon Kids …

    Bob

    PS: Mimi – Frank is probably pre-occuppied interviewing French girls to tutor me. I really need to brush up on my French! – LOL 🙂

  • Frank

    Monument at Bastogne … The name of all the states are written around it.

    Why did I take the picture with Ohio showing?

    Such a beautiful place, much different from 1944!

    Monument at Bastogne - Battle of the Bulge

    Looking toward Bastogne.

    Looking Toward Bastogne from Monument

    Le Nut’s Bar in Bastogne.

    Le Nut's Bar in Bastogne.

    Frank

  • Admin

    Frank – I think you took the picture with Ohio showing because: you were actually taking a picture of the girls under the umbrella and they just happened to be standing under Ohio … LOL 🙂

    Ahh … Le Nut’s … how fitting, Frank – suits you to a tea … LOL 🙂 – do you feel at home there in the “Nut House” … ha ha ha ROFL 🙂

    In checking out the Menu I see we have a “30 Caliber” and a “30 White Caliber” – what’s the difference between them … ohhhh let me guess one is white and the other isn’t! – LOL – Is it some kind of drink? What’s it got in it? Not being a drinking man I’ve never heard of it before … lol

    But, the first item on the Menu does remind me of an old Rock N Roll song … “Barracuda” – remember that one Frank!?!

    Rock on Saigon Kid …

    Bob

    PS: Thanks for all the great pictures, Frank! Very much appreciated! Where are you off to next????

  • Mimi

    Nice menu!!! one meter of sausage…!!! that is for big appetites. And not too expensive at that!
    The white caliber ? maybe bcz the thuringer is (also) a sausage but with veal in it. Just a guess!

    Looking at the peacefull landscape pic,of what has been more than once over the centuries the scene of bloody battles, I was thinking that may be it does take a lot of deaths, tears and misery to finally learn that there is another way to live. At least, the europeans seem to have understood.

    Thanx Frank for keeping in touch.
    And Bob, glad that everything is ok on your side.
    xxx mimi

  • 19 Euros for a meter long sandwich and a beer? WOW a bit pricy oui? Mon Deux!

  • Admin

    Well geezzz … Mimi I guess I should have read the Menu – LOL. When Frank titled the pix as a “bar” I just assumed it was a ‘drink’ menu … lol

    But, now I see … it is food! ha ha ha 🙂

    Now I wonder if Frank ate one of those Barracuda’s – lol – that would be a sight to see, wouldn’t?! But, knowing Frank he just might do it sooooo he could wash it down with 3 litres of Ba Muoi Ba – LOL

    Jay – where are you at that 19 Euros is expensive – lol – Heck most of the sandwich places around here run about the same @ around $8/9 USD per foot, and they are not even a ‘barracuda’… ha ha ha

    Dang! All this talk about food is making me hungry. Think I’ll go for a Vienna corned beef sandwich – LOL 🙂 [Yes, of course with garlic – Mimi – LOL – gotta keep them vampires away! 🙂 ]

    Peace to all and to all a good night …

    Bob

  • Mike Dunn

    “Nuts!” was BG Anthony P. McAuliffe’s reply to the Germans at Bastogne when they sent him a message requesting he surrender.

  • You are right Mike … that really confused the Germans! Glad you are having a blast Frank … my turn next year.

    Roy

  • Admin

    Mike – thanks for the info. Not being a military history buff, I never knew that about “Nuts”. Just goes to show we can always learn something new – I did today.

    Roy – why wait to next year to have a ‘blast’?! Remember that old saying, “Do It Now!” – LOL 🙂

    Hmmm, just had an idea (dangerous I know – lol) … a new Saigon Kids private label beer “Blast 33” or “Ba Muoi Ba Blast” – lol.

    Soooo has anyone figured out why Frank took the picture of the monument with Ohio showing????

    Rock on Saigon Kids …

    Bob

  • Mike Dunn

    Great pictures, Frank! Thanks. I’m guessing Ohio is where you were born? I was lucky enough to go on an Officers Call to Bastogne, courtesy of our commander in Germany, when I was in the 21st Support Command. I have never been to Normandy, so it’ll have to be on my bucket list. My Dad was an early bird on D-Day, and is mentioned in Cornelius Ryan’s, THE LONGEST DAY. He was given the mission to clear the Isle d’ St. Mere E’couf (don’t know if I spelled that right). He was in the 4th Cavalry and was given command of a task force to accomplish the mission. No Germans, just a bunch of mines and booby traps, so Cornelius Ryan called it a footnote in history (which did not set well with Dad, and the families of the lost troopers.) So, it is, we go to France, as you said, to learn about America. “La Salle, nous sommes ici,” is a quote from Black Jack Pershing, as he laid a wreath on the tomb of the unknown, in Paris.

  • Mike Dunn

    Oops! It was Lafayette, not La Salle, that General Pershing was commemorating, when he came over to France with the AEF to help out in the Great War (now known as WWI).

  • Admin

    This was my last stop.

    Euro--pee'n
    Sign Euro--pee'n

    I was walking down the street and met a euro–pee’n!!

    Frank

  • Admin

    Does anyone know what the sign says???

    Rock on Frank …

    Have a safe journey home! 🙂

    Bob

  • randy seely

    Frank…what a wonderful photographic journal of your trip…thanks very much for sharing with us!

    Mike…nice mention of your dad’s role in D-Day. What incredible heroics, huh? Thanks to your dad…and all the other dads…mine included..who played a role in forging the Allied route across Europe. I feel such pride.

    Randy

  • The sign describes the costume(s) that have been given (for the current month, June) to dress up the most famous statue in Brussels: le Manneken Pis, a centuries-old attraction.

    Hey Frank: how many Ba-Muoi-Ba’s did you have to give that kid to make him pee on your head so accurately?

    For the full-blown history of le Manneken Pis, start by reading the entry on Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manneken_Pis) and progress to the “official” website that’s linked at the bottom of the page.

    Bruce

  • Thanks for the memories… Sorry to see you get wet on your last day. ( GREAT Pic ) My Dad used to have a paper weight of that very statue on his desk where all the needless memos went before going in the trash. LOL

  • Frank

    Ah! My health and age bothers me, but this year again I will be heading to Europe. We, by buddy Carlos and I will not be visiting the Normandy Beach on this 70th anniversary. We will, however, be going under the English Chanel on 6th of June heading from London to Paris. Every year for about the last 12, I have said this is my last. I do not teach at the high school anymore, but thanks to Carlos (he is now the boss rather than me) we are going to London, Paris, Heidelberg, Munich, Vienna, Prague and Berlin. We know the Pub that we’ll be eating at, just off of Piccadilly Circus in London. The best place to have “duck” in Paris is in Montmartre. Heidelberg has terrific beer and wine and such a beautiful setting. Munich of course has the Half Brauhaus and the beautiful downtown cobble streets with the om-pa music. I have not been to Vienna since I was 15 years old. I had just come from living in Iran for 5 years and I noticed all the beautiful young girls. They were looking at me and I was staring at them. I noticed that women in their 40 and 50’s were doing much of the hard labor work. Laying bricks and pushing wheel barrels…I inquired to my Dad, and he told me it was because so much of their men population had been wiped out during WW II.
    Prague is such a beautiful City…Maybe the most beautiful in the world. The people, however, strike me has being very “down”. Maybe this year they will be smiling. I have been to Berlin during the “Cold War” and after. I hope to see something this year that makes me want to connect to it.
    Ah yes, I am on to food and drink. I love to sit at sidewalk cafes and watch the people go by. I think our teenagers go through a “right of passage” when they go to Europe with Carlos and I. Yes, my angles (cankles) will swell, I will get exhausted, I will worry about the kids, and be so glad to be back in Phoenix….but every trip has been worth it.

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