By John Mizerak –
D-Day is observed in the U.S. in memory of the Normandy landings in France on June 6, 1944, in which American soldiers and other Allied forces fought to end World War II in Europe.
On D-Day, more than 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. Gen. 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, the Allies gained a foot-hold in Continental Europe. The cost in lives on D-Day was high. More than 9,000 Allied Soldiers were killed or wounded, but their sacrifice allowed more than 100,000 Soldiers to begin the slow, hard slog across Europe, to defeat Adolf Hitler’s crack troops.
The team at Mighty Oaks solemnly remembers and memorializes those 160,000 brave troops who swam, waded or crawled through the cold, choppy North Sea waters to set foot on those five, now almost sacred beaches of legend — Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword — and the nearly 20,000 men who parachuted from above during the largest amphibious landings and airborne operations mankind had ever seen. (Sadly, many — way too many — never made it ashore or reached French soil safely.)
“This operation is not being planned with any alternatives. This operation is planned as a victory, and that’s the way it’s going to be. We’re going down there, and we’re throwing everything we have into it, and we’re going to make it a success.”
— General Dwight D Eisenhower