D-Day - Let's not forgot those who sacrificed

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D-Day - Let's not forgot those who sacrificed

Postby apowell » Tue Jun 02, 2009 7:18 pm

The 6th of June will mark the 65th anniversary of D-Day and events are planned to honour and pay respect to those who fought and fell.

We can only imagine the hell and carnage witnessed by those who took part however this extract from a soldier's memoirs gives us an insight of landing on the beaches on D-Day:

'Soon we are only 500 yards from the beach and are ordered to get down. Minutes later the boat stops and begins to toss in the waves and the ramp goes down and without hesitation my section leader, jumps out well over his waist in water. He only makes a few yards and is killed. We have landed dead onto a pillbox with a machine gun blazing away at us. We didn't hesitate and jumped into the water one after the other I was last of the first row. Where was everybody? My section are only half there some were just floating on their Mae West's.

My bren gun team are just in front of me when something hit my left magazine pouch and stops me up short for a moment. The round had gone right through two magazines, entered my left side and came out my back. We are now up to our knees in water and you can hear a kind of buzzing sound all around as well as the sound of the machine gun itself. All of a sudden something slapped the side of my right leg and then a round caught me dead centre up high on my right leg causing a compound fracture. By this time I was flat on my face in the water I've lost my rifle, my helmet is gone and I've got ten bren gun magazines and they're pulling me under. I soon get rid of them and flop over onto my back and start to float to shore where I meet five other riflemen all in very bad shape. The man beside me is dead within minutes. All the while we are looking up at the machine gun firing just over our heads at the rest of our platoon and company and then our platoon Sargent and friend of mine, who had given up a commission to be with us was killed right in front of me.

By evening all that was left of my platoon of 35 men was one Lance Sargent, one wounded Lance Corporal and six riflemen. All the rest were dead or wounded.'

'Field Marshall Erwin Rommel had been right it had been and will always be the longest day.'

Please take a few moments to remember this June, 6.
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Re: D-Day - Let's not forgot those who sacrificed

Postby Rob » Tue Jun 02, 2009 11:40 pm

I was on Omaha Beach last week.I stood alone on this massive beach with my feet in the sea and looked up at the cliffs in front of me and i could feel death all around .5000 American troops were killed in the first 2 hours of the D-Day landing.Nurses that went in on the second or third wave were told to shield themselves from machine gun fire by using the bodies of the dead Americans lying in the surf!!
The American Military Cementry on the cliffs of Omaha Beach has 25000 graves all meticulously looked after by our French allies.The wall of the remembrance memorial is filled with the names of the fallen.Average age? 20 years.
Let's not forget.
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