It is the small simple things of life that bring us peace.

Friday, June 6, 2014

70 years ago today

Early on the morning of June 6, 1944 the Allied Forces invaded the beaches of Normandy in the largest seaborne invasion in history.  Of the 150,000 soldiers, half were American.  General Eisenhower told them before their departure, "We will accept nothing less than full victory"; D-day is regarded as the turning point of World War II.

It still isn't known exactly how many soldiers gave their lives that day. The Army estimates that there were 9,000 killed or wounded; there were many who would be listed as missing in action. It would be weeks before their families knew of their loss, something that is hard to understand in our world of instant communication.  The news reels would bring the story weeks later, too. Germany would surrender on May 8, 1945.

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav'n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
(Francis Scott Key, The Star Spangled Banner,1814, 4th stanza)

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