June 6th, 2021

Normandy Invasion — “Operation Overlord” — June 6, 1944

Seventy-seven years ago today, on June 6, 1944, Allied forces stormed the beaches of Normandy as part of Operation Overlord, the largest amphibious invasion in history. The ultimate goal was the liberation of Europe. The Normandy invasion began with overnight parachute and glider landings, massive air attacks, and naval bombardments. In the early morning, amphibious landings on five beaches, code-named Juno, Gold, Omaha, Utah, and Sword commenced. During the evening the remaining parachute divisions landed. The D-Day Normandy landings were the first successful opposed landings across the English Channel in over eight centuries.

Today we should remember those who crossed the Channel to begin the liberation of Europe. Thousands of soldiers, sailors, and aviators gave their lives on June 6, 1944, courageously supporting the cause of defeating Nazi Tyranny. Their sacrifice on “The Longest Day”, allowed people throughout Europe to enjoy freedom. We should remember those brave warriors, and never forget that freedom is not free — it requires continuing vigilance and sacrifice.

Was Normandy the Largest Amphibious Invasion in History?
Operation Overload was the largest combined amphibious operation in history. Some historians say there were more fighting troops on-board ships during Okinawa. But the combined force of soldiers, sailors, paratroopers, aviators, and civilians (manning ships), was greater at D-Day, and more men were debarked the first day at D-Day. Likewise, most historians say that over 5000 ships took part in D-Day. This far exceeds the number of ships at Okinawa (less than 1600 by most accounts).

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