D-Day 70th Anniversary 1944-2014
Located near Colleville-sur-Mer ( Calvados ) in Normandy, the 172.5-acre site contains the graves of 9,387 U.S. military dead and the names of 1,557 of the missing.
The Normandy Campaign
The massive Allied assault on the Normandy coastline on June 6, 1944, aimed to liberate France and drive into Nazi Germany.
Before dawn on June 6, three airborne divisions landed by para chute and glider behin targeted beaches. Allied naval forces, including the U.S. Coast Guard, conveyed assault forces across the English Channel . Beginning at 06.30 hours, six divisions U.S.,Canadian and British landed on Utah , Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword Beaches in history’s greatest amphibious assault.
The U.S. Infantry Divisions battled German resistance over beaches bristling with obstacles. To reach the village of Colleville, troops fought across an open area of up 200 yards, and attacked up steep bluffs . By days’ end, the Americans held fragile control of Omaha Beach.
Over the next three months, the Allies battled German troops throughout Normandy. British and Canadians freed Caen. Americans liberated Cherbourg and staged a dramatic breakout near Saint-Lô. Allied troops, joined by French and Polish units, encircled and annihilated German troops at the Falaise pocket while surviving units fled eastward . The way was now open to advance toward Paris and then to Germany.
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U.S. National Archives
Regional Council of Basse-Normandie-U.S. National Archives
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