Seventy years ago, on a beach in France, men from different areas of the globe engaged in deadly combat. Today men and women from those same countries are gathering to remember that awful time and pay their respects to the soldiers and sailors who did not return from that mission. As greed and insanity spread across the globe during those years, the United States called her men and women to join in the fight to prevent the evil from extending to our country.
An American woman named Beth was a child on that day, waiting for her father to return home from the war. He did not survive that terrible day, but he is yet remembered. Each year Beth sends flowers to his grave in France as a reminder that, though he died young, he was and always will be loved.
Though many of those who were at Normandy are no longer with us, their family members remain, and it is to each of them, combatant and family member, that we extend our gratitude. They have been called the greatest generation, and their willingness to extend a forgiving hand to their former enemies, as seen today at ceremonies around the world, proves that this title is well deserved.
There is little doubt that another war will come our way at some point in time, though we wish it would not happen. When it does, we pray that another great generation will stand, look to the brave example set at Normandy, and protect freedom and right. Yes, we do believe the old saying “Freedom is not free” and we thank those who paid our price.
View a video showing at the Visitors Center at Normandy here.
We recommend visiting the American Battle Monuments Commission website for photos, videos, and remembrances. According to their site, the ABMC was established by the United States Congress in 1923 and is an agency of the executive branch of the federal government. [It is the] guardian of America’s overseas commemorative cemeteries and memorials [and] honors the service, achievements and sacrifice of U.S. Armed Forces.