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Profiles

  • John Ciechanowski (1921 - 2008)
    Polish cavalry officer John Ciechanowski (1921-2008) participated in the Normandy Landing, became a well known jockey and later trainer at the stud farm Lambourn for the Maktoum-family, reigning prince...
  • Field Marshal Sir Geoffrey Harding Baker, GCB, CMG, CBE, MC (1912 - 1980)
    Field Marshal Sir Geoffrey Harding Baker, GCB, CMG, CBE, MC (20 June 1912 – 8 May 1980) was Chief of the General Staff, the professional head of the British Army, from 1968 to 1971. He served in the ...
  • General Sir Harry Craufurd Tuzo, GCB, OBE, MC (1917 - 1998)
    General Sir Harry Crawford Tuzo, GCB, OBE, MC (26 August 1917 – 7 August 1998) was a British Army officer who was Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe and General Officer Commanding of the British ...
  • Maj.- Gen. George Erroll Prior-Palmer (1903 - 1977)
    Major-General George Erroll Prior-Palmer, CB, DSO (20 February 1903 – 18 August 1977) was a senior British Army officer and business man of Anglo-Irish origins. He saw active service in the Second ...
  • Herman F Collins (1924 - 1944)
    Reference: Find A Grave Memorial - SmartCopy : Mar 4 2018, 14:16:37 UTC Residence : Worcester, Massachusetts, USA Reference: U.S. World War II Army Enlistment - SmartCopy : Mar 5 2018, 0:07:43 UTC

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normandy_landings

The Normandy landings (codenamed Operation Neptune) were the landing operations on 6 June 1944 (termed D-Day) of the Allied invasion of Normandy in Operation Overlord during World War II. The largest seaborne invasion in history, the operation began the liberation of German-occupied northwestern Europe from Nazi control, and contributed to the Allied victory on the Western Front.

Planning for the operation began in 1943. In the months leading up to the invasion, the Allies conducted a substantial military deception, codenamed Operation Bodyguard, to mislead the Germans as to the date and location of the main Allied landings. The weather on D-Day was far from ideal, but postponing would have meant a delay of at least two weeks, as the invasion planners had requirements for the phase of the moon, the tides, and the time of day that meant only a few days in each month were deemed suitable. Hitler placed German Field Marshal Erwin Rommel in command of German forces and of developing fortifications along the Atlantic Wall in anticipation of an Allied invasion.

The amphibious landings were preceded by extensive aerial and naval bombardment and an airborne assault—the landing of 24,000 British, US, and Canadian airborne troops shortly after midnight. Allied infantry and armoured divisions began landing on the coast of France at 06:30. The target 50-mile (80 km) stretch of the Normandy coast was divided into five sectors: Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno, and Sword Beach. Strong winds blew the landing craft east of their intended positions, particularly at Utah and Omaha. The men landed under heavy fire from gun emplacements overlooking the beaches, and the shore was mined and covered with obstacles such as wooden stakes, metal tripods, and barbed wire, making the work of the beach clearing teams difficult and dangerous. Casualties were heaviest at Omaha, with its high cliffs. At Gold, Juno, and Sword, several fortified towns were cleared in house-to-house fighting, and two major gun emplacements at Gold were disabled using specialised tanks.

The Allies failed to achieve all of their goals on the first day. Carentan, St. Lô, and Bayeux remained in German hands, and Caen, a major objective, was not captured until 21 July. Only two of the beaches (Juno and Gold) were linked on the first day, and all five bridgeheads were not connected until 12 June. However, the operation gained a foothold that the Allies gradually expanded over the coming months. German casualties on D-Day were around 1,000 men. Allied casualties were at least 10,000, with 4,414 confirmed dead. Museums, memorials, and war cemeteries in the area host many visitors each year.

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The target 50-mile (80 km) stretch of the Normandy coast was divided into five sectors:

  1. Utah Beach D-Day
  2. Omaha Beach D-Day
  3. Gold Beach D-Day
  4. Juno Beach D-Day
  5. Sword Beach D-Day

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