Right Now, 73 Years Ago, Allied Paratroopers Began Gearing Up and Loading Up on C-47's and Gliders Ahead of D-Day, H-Hour...

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<p>Unbelievable it&#39;s been 73 years. Never forget the sacrifices. </p> <p>If you enjoy history, please watch HBO&#39;s Band of Brothers. It is a fantastic series that follows the formation of E Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne. Currahee! </p> <p><a href="https://youtu.be/S7IWHAElA48">Band of Brothers D-Day Flight</a></p> <blockquote> <p>Soldiers, Sailors, and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force:</p> <p>You are about to embark upon the Great Crusade, toward which we have striven these many months.</p> <p>The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere march with you.</p> <p>In company with our brave Allies and brothers-in-arms on other Fronts you will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.</p> <p>Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped, and battle-hardened. He will fight savagely.</p> <p>But this is the year 1944. Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of 1940-41. The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeats, in open battle, man-to-man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground. Our Home Fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions of war, and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men. The tide has turned. The free men of the world are marching together to victory.</p> <p>I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty, and skill in battle. We will accept nothing less than full victory.</p> <p>Good Luck! And let us all beseech the blessing of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking. </p> <p><strong>Dwight D. Eisenhower</strong></p> </blockquote> <hr/>**评论:**<br/><br/>historymodbot: <pre><p>Welcome to <strong><a href="/r/History">/r/History</a></strong>!</p> <p>This post is getting rather popular, so here is a friendly reminder for people who may not know about our rules.</p> <p><strong>We ask that your comments contribute and are on topic.</strong> One of the most heard complaints about default subreddits is the fact that the comment section has a considerable amount of jokes, puns and other off topic comments, which drown out meaningful discussion. Which is why we ask this, because <a href="/r/History">/r/History</a> is dedicated to knowledge about a certain subject with an emphasis on discussion. </p> <p>We have a few more rules, which you can see in the sidebar. </p> <p>Thank you!</p> <p><em>I am a bot, and this action was performed automatically. Please <a href="https://www.reddit.com/message/compose?to=%2Fr%2Fhistory">contact the moderators</a> if you have any questions or concerns. Replies to this comment will be removed automatically.</em></p></pre>m0ddem: <pre><p>The fun part is Eisenhower had his failure letter/speech written and ready.</p> <p>Even the planners knew it was absolutely no sure thing.</p></pre>Kebab_remover-: <pre><p>Source? I definitely want to read that if it has been released</p></pre>vidivicivini: <pre><p>&#34;Our landings in the Cherbourg-Havre area have failed to gain a satisfactory foothold and I have withdrawn the troops. My decision to attack at this time and place was based upon the best information available. The troops, the air and the Navy did all that Bravery and devotion to duty could do. If any blame or fault attaches to the attempt it is mine alone.&#34;</p></pre>warhorse24: <pre><p>What a selfless, strong, and encouraging leader. </p></pre>UWillNeverGetDis: <pre><p>The last two sentences are genuinely moving. What the fuck happened to us.</p></pre>realslowtyper: <pre><p>The same man that wrote that letter gave this farewell address. He saw it coming.</p> <p>&#34;Until the latest of our world conflicts, the United States had no armaments industry. American makers of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well. But we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense. We have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on military security alone more than the net income of all United States corporations.</p> <p>Now this conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence—economic, political, even spiritual—is felt in every city, every Statehouse, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet, we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources, and livelihood are all involved. So is the very structure of our society.</p> <p>In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.&#34;</p> <p>Edit- More Eisenhower &#34;A Chance for Peace&#34;:</p> <p>&#34;Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone.</p> <p>It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. </p> <p>The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. </p> <p>It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population.</p> <p>It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals.</p> <p>It is some 50 miles of concrete highway.</p> <p>We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat.</p> <p>We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people.</p> <p>This, I repeat, is the best way of life to be found on the road the world has been taking. This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron.&#34;</p></pre>HephaestusClangBang: <pre><p>Historical perspective helps here but Eisenhower was arguably our greatest modern President. Wasn&#39;t afraid to harshly condemn our allies when they went afoul of sensible policy (Suez Crisis), and didn&#39;t let his own prejudices or conflicts get in the way of policy (Civil Rights Act of 1957). Helped build the interstate, lowered the national debt, cut defense spending, and promoted science education, all the while being a sensible moderate conservative that wasn&#39;t afraid to cross the aisle to achieve success.</p> <p>At the time his popularity was tied to his military acumen but today I think we desperately miss the kind of leadership he provided as President. Our current leaders could certainly take a few pages out if his book.</p></pre>Xenjael: <pre><p>We had a lot of greats in the 20th. It&#39;s time we elected more.</p></pre>jonathan5150: <pre><p>Such wise words. I wonder what Eisenhower would say if he we were alive to witness the sorry state of affairs in America today. </p></pre>oXTheReverendXo: <pre><p>&#34;See, I told you so.&#34; --Eisenhower today, probably.</p></pre>thefrc: <pre><p>Maybe something like &#34;Huh, figured it would happen, didn&#39;t expect it to take this long&#34; or the like...</p></pre>brildenlanch: <pre><p>Thank you for taking the time to post this. My Dad loves this speech, he wrote a thesis on it. </p></pre>potato_centurion: <pre><p>Eisenhower was truly a Homeric hero</p></pre>Baskojin: <pre><p>You should read William Tecumseh Sherman&#39;s letter regarding the burning of Atlanta. </p> <p><strong>&#34;You cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will. War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out. I know I had no hand in making this war, and I know I will make more sacrifices to-day than any of you to secure peace.&#34;</strong></p></pre>CFBShitPoster: <pre><p>Multiple generations of children who grew up with the privilege to never have to experience the kind of total sacrifice that the wartime world did back in those days. Vietnam was something fucked, but it was in no way comparable to the kind of total war effort that went into WW2. WW2 was literally a fight for survival. </p></pre>SarcasticCarebear: <pre><p>I really wouldn&#39;t attribute the fall of selfless leaders to generations of privileged kids. That&#39;s incredibly short sighted. There are plenty of people working multiple jobs for their kids and passing that work ethic on. </p> <p>Look more towards the rise of corporate interests paying lobbyists to influence govt. That&#39;s the reason. </p></pre>CaptainDildozer: <pre><p>Yeah, I agree, but it&#39;s also the lose of community, which I think plays into the favor of lobbyists. 50 years ago communities would rally more than now.. now it seems people wont socialize at all together. They would rather pass by each other then make comments on facebook posts than gather together in the streets</p></pre>SarcasticCarebear: <pre><p>I&#39;m simplifying a very complex issue that I am also complaining about someone simplifying. There&#39;s a myriad of reasons. </p> <p>I agree we don&#39;t have the same communities we used to but we&#39;re also bigger and more complex as a country. To some extent the internet actually brought some of that back together with social media. </p> <p>I just feel the true downfall of our govt has been lobbyists. Just look at how cheap every republican sold off net neutrality. $3k-$10k per vote is ridiculously cheap for companies like Comcast. We&#39;d be living in an alternate reality if the US govt was that easily bought 80 years ago. </p></pre>sw04ca: <pre><blockquote> <p>I agree we don&#39;t have the same communities we used to but we&#39;re also bigger and more complex as a country. To some extent the internet actually brought some of that back together with social media. </p> </blockquote> <p>Quite the opposite. The Internet helped divide us into tribes by reinforcing subcultures. Once upon a time, if you were a grown man who was interested in My Little Ponies, your interest would be yours alone, and you would likely end up conforming to the ways of your neighbours. The Internet puts that man in touch with others who share his interest, which reinforces it. Great for him. Not great for the community though, when everyone is more connected with distant strangers than their neighbours. </p> <blockquote> <p>Just look at how cheap every republican sold off net neutrality. $3k-$10k per vote is ridiculously cheap for companies like Comcast. </p> </blockquote> <p>So you &#39;d be more comfortable if they had made the bribes more? I think it&#39;s possible that the cable companies have been convincing the Republicans not just with bribes, but also with ideological appeals. It&#39;s possible to have an honestly-held belief that some aspects of net neutrality are not necessarily consumer-friendly, such as a provider having Facebook not count towards your data cap. Representatives do vote for reasons other than corruption. That&#39;s how we got environmental regulation, as I guarantee Dow bribes harder than the Sierra Club.</p></pre>kerouacrimbaud: <pre><p>Those corporate interests existed long before Eisenhower. The Robber Barons and the railroad tycoons began that. Unless you count the slave owners.</p></pre>SarcasticCarebear: <pre><p>Oh I&#39;m fully aware its existed forever. But globalization has amped up their need to influence govt. </p> <p>Before it was shady land deals here, you could buy a mayor and get zoning redone in KC. Now its global corporations with all their production in China that need a lot more done. </p></pre>sw04ca: <pre><p>It&#39;s not like the influence of business on government has radically increased though. I think that the media plays a big role in it. It&#39;s become harder to get away with things, and even mild personal misconduct is seen as damning and disqualifying in a public official. We know everything about everyone running for office, and the only people considered suited for office are vat-grown political animals who have been planning their political career since junior high school. The problem with this is twofold. People get used to overlooking problems with candidates that they prefer, which allows them to ignore some pretty big issues. It also produces a backlash where people will vote for someone who revels in bad behaviour just to show &#39;them&#39;. </p> <p>At one point, the media had a better idea of when to draw the line. Almost every president prior to Nixon had a girl on the side, but you&#39;d have never known it from reading the newspaper. </p></pre>SarcasticCarebear: <pre><p>The media drawing the line was also super connected to money. Lack of information/entertainment options allowed them to have principles. </p></pre>PhasmaFelis: <pre><p>That&#39;s part of the thing, I think. Americans suffered in WW2, but they understood why, and great things came from their sacrifices. Vietnam was gentler in terms of the total number of American lives, but to many appearances they were sacrificed for nothing significant. That breeds bitterness.</p></pre>SwenKa: <pre><p>WW2 we were fighting for a cause almost everyone could support. We were attacked. We were fighting to avenge those lost and to rid the world of an aggressive state that would accept no compromise. Most of our fights after? Not so much. Mostly just proxy wars and money for war profiteers.</p></pre>SamTahoe: <pre><p>You could much the say the same of America after 9/11.</p></pre>PM_your_front_bum: <pre><blockquote> <p>Vietnam was something fucked, but it was in no way comparable to the kind of total war effort that went into WW2.</p> </blockquote> <p>The only thing incomparable was the numbers involved.</p> <p>It was a brutal fight. And anyone that tries to down play that needs a punch to the throat.</p> <p>The Vietnamese had the most advanced anti-air network setup that the world has ever seen. Russia used the Vietnam war as a test for all their latest military equipment with devastating results.</p> <p>The sad thing was how those boys were treated when they came home.</p></pre>SamTahoe: <pre><p>Today there is exactly one railroad track going from south to north in Vietnam. Not even two rails so that trains can pass each other at speed. When two trains are approaching, one must pull off onto a side track and wait. It was the same way back during the war, so of course the train track and bridges were heavily bombed. Today when you ride that train you can still see the depressions where huge bombs dropped near bridges.</p> <p>Taking a bus into Ho Chi Minh City from Cambodia you will pass through the most heavily bombed area of Vietnam. In that area a huge tunnel network was active during the entire war. It was designated a &#34;free fire&#34; zone, so any bombers returning from missions that still had bombs loaded would drop them randomly in that area before landing. Of course, it was heavily deforested as well. Today, there is still a stunning amount of poverty in that area. The land hasn&#39;t recovered, and trees are still sparse and young.</p> <p>Traveling through Vietnam is a lot of fun, and the country is very open for tourism. However if you look around a bit then there are still reminders of just how horrible that war was.</p></pre>brildenlanch: <pre><p>I still have difficulty understanding that shit. I can&#39;t imagine it happening today at such a level. </p></pre>eternal_septuagint: <pre><p>It reads like you are blaming peace</p></pre>UWillNeverGetDis: <pre><p>That&#39;s what I attribute the complete disconnect I experience between my undergraduate peers and myself to. OEF was no World War either but I understand death and chaos and have an appreciation for what glorious lives we lead in the US relative to the opposite end of the scale. It&#39;s hard to take people seeking &#34;emotionally safe&#34; schools seriously in light of those realities.</p></pre>jmcc445: <pre><p>I agree, but with the addition of the helicopter. The average infantryman in Vietnam saw 240 days of combat compared to 40 in the Pacific theater in WW2, even less in Europe. WW2 was probably the last righteous war we have fought.</p></pre>PWL73316: <pre><p>Gotta add a massive &#34;**in America&#34; to that.</p> <p>Vietnamese children surely knew what it was like to grow up during a total war. </p></pre>TheHornyHobbit: <pre><p>Or instead you could say &#34;in most of the developed world.&#34;</p></pre>Decade_Late: <pre><p>That generation lowered a ladder down to the next to help them climb up. That next generation is pulling the ladder up behind them, and have been for 30 years.</p></pre>pm_favorite_boobs: <pre><p>Isn&#39;t this still a common attitude among flag and general officers? </p></pre>RGA64: <pre><p>imagine the letters rommel sent home</p> <p>edit; guy with big hair trying to order us around</p></pre>Greyswandir: <pre><p>No need for him to send letters home. June 6th was his wife&#39;s birthday and he had taken some vacation time to go visit her and their son. The weather had been crappy, so he and his staff (incorrectly) believed the Allies would have to wait for the weather to clear before any invasion could happen. He spent most of D-Day frantically racing from Germany back to Normandy. </p></pre>swohio: <pre><p>It did get pushed back one day due to weather, didn&#39;t it?</p></pre>warhorse24: <pre><p>Rommel actually wasn&#39;t a Nazi. He didn&#39;t agree with Hitler or his policies, he was just a German fighting for his country. IIRC, he treated prisoners and his own soldiers alike with respect and non-violence. So, that added with his brilliance as a general makes me think his letters would be pretty eloquent as well. </p></pre>hopelessrobo: <pre><p>That dude had aplomb.</p></pre>perogies: <pre><p>They don&#39;t make them like that anymore. </p></pre>KaneRobot: <pre><p>Not to derail, but while I was looking that up I found Nixon&#39;s speech for what he would have said if Apollo 11 had failed returning from the moon.</p> <hr/> <p>IN THE EVENT OF MOON DISASTER:</p> <p>&#34;Fate has ordained that the men who went to the moon to explore in peace will stay on the moon to rest in peace.</p> <p>These brave men, Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin, know that there is no hope for their recovery. But they also know that there is hope for mankind in their sacrifice.</p> <p>These two men are laying down their lives in mankind&#39;s most noble goal: the search for truth and understanding.</p> <p>They will be mourned by their families and friends; they will be mourned by their nation; they will be mourned by the people of the world; they will be mourned by a Mother Earth that dared send two of her sons into the unknown.</p> <p>In their exploration, they stirred the people of the world to feel as one; in their sacrifice, they bind more tightly the brotherhood of man.</p> <p>In ancient days, men looked at stars and saw their heroes in the constellations. In modern times, we do much the same, but our heroes are epic men of flesh and blood.</p> <p>Others will follow and surely find their way home. Man&#39;s search will not be denied. But these men were the first, and they will remain the foremost in our hearts.</p> <p>For every human being who looks up at the moon in the nights to come will know that there is some corner of another world that is forever mankind.&#34;</p> <p>PRIOR TO THE PRESIDENT&#39;S STATEMENT: The president should telephone each of the widows-to-be.</p> <p>AFTER THE PRESIDENT&#39;S STATEMENT, at the point when NASA ends communications with the men: A clergyman should adopt the same procedure as a burial at sea, commending their souls to &#34;the deepest of the deep,&#34; concluding with the Lord&#39;s Prayer</p></pre>seriouswalnut: <pre><p>Just imagining giving those words to Neil and Buzz. Each controller in mission control listening to their final breath. The last words of the first men to land on the moon. It would make a hell of a movie. </p></pre>IAmAGenusAMA: <pre><p>In his own handwriting:</p> <p><a href="https://imgur.com/lsSDZ79" rel="nofollow">https://imgur.com/lsSDZ79</a></p> <p>This copy is on display at the National WWII Museum in New Orleans. </p></pre>whiskey512: <pre><p>If you&#39;re into world war 2 history. Stephen Ambrose wrote &#34;Band of Brothers&#34; which the series was based on. As well as D-Day which was a very good read about the real details of the invasion. </p></pre>Waynersnitzel: <pre><p>Also &#34;Pegasus Bridge&#34; detailing some of the British operations on D-Day.</p></pre>whiskey512: <pre><p>Yes, thats on my list too. I read &#34;D-Day&#34; and &#34;Band of brothers&#34; ahead of the month I spent in Europe retracing the steps of Easy Company, both had a tremendous amount of information that made the trip more immersive for me. I&#39;m reading Dick Winters &#34;Beyond Bamd of Brothers&#34; right now and recomend it as well. </p></pre>Aleph_Zed: <pre><p><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Longest_Day_(film)" rel="nofollow">The Longest Day</a>, a 1962 film about d-day is quite a good watch as well. They had access to tons of extras, beachline, military surplus and a lot of the shots are outstanding. Various tactics I hadn&#39;t seen before even in band of brothers as well.</p></pre>Brickie78: <pre><p>The Longest Day is based on Cornelius Ryan&#39;s book of the same name, which was based on interviews with survivors, and does a fantastic job of giving an overview of things, with British, French, American and German perspectives.</p> <p>It was a massive all-star cast featuring anyone who was anyone in the early-60s film industry - and of course, being made just 18 years after D-Day, many of the older actors in it had served in the war. Richard Todd, previously best known for &#34;The Dam Busters&#34;, played his own commanding officer, and actually interacts with another actor playing &#34;Corporal Todd&#34; at one point (though I don&#39;t think it&#39;s made explicit in the film). A little known actor called Sean Connery has a minor role, just before flying out to the Caribbean to begin work on <em>Doctor No</em>, while Richard Burton and I think Roddy McDowell shot their short roles during their interminable hold-ups in the filming of <em>Cleopatra</em> on the next sound stage over.</p> <p>They even asked Eisenhower to play himself, now he was done with being President, but he didn&#39;t think he could convincingly look young enough.</p> <p>Ryan also wrote <em>The Longest Day</em> which also became an all-star-cast movie, about Operation Market Garden, the Arnhem drop.</p></pre>Privateer781: <pre><blockquote> <p>Ryan also wrote The Longest Day which also became an all-star-cast movie, about Operation Market Garden, the Arnhem drop.</p> </blockquote> <p>Oops! I&#39;m guessing you meant <em>A Bridge Too Far</em>? Definitely in the Top 5 Best War Films list.</p></pre>2manycooks: <pre><p>They did a pretty amazing job with all their preparation though! The amount of planning and coordination achieved during this operation is absolutely astounding. </p></pre>facts_are_important: <pre><p>In fact, their planning of the landings were so good, they overlooked all the planning and training required for the breakout, which is one of the reasons why it took so long.</p></pre>CastBatt: <pre><p>I remember that. It&#39;s almost as if they didn&#39;t expect to make it off the beaches, as hedgerow country was right behind the landing zones. Operation Cobra took so long, in my opinion, because everybody had the answer to the question &#34;how do we get ON the beaches?&#34;, while nobody had the answer to &#34;how do we get OFF once we&#39;re on?&#34; Obviously, judging by things like &#34;Hobart&#39;s Funnies&#34;, the country setting was a huge surprise to some. </p></pre>ABirdOfParadise: <pre><p>Here&#39;s an hour video about all the crazy versions of Shermans they invented to get around the problems with the landing.</p> <p><a href="https://streamable.com/z0qf">https://streamable.com/z0qf</a></p> <p><a href="https://streamable.com/im2b">https://streamable.com/im2b</a></p> <p><a href="https://streamable.com/3cdp">https://streamable.com/3cdp</a></p> <p><a href="https://streamable.com/px10">https://streamable.com/px10</a></p> <p><a href="https://streamable.com/h801">https://streamable.com/h801</a></p></pre>pastorofmuppets95: <pre><p>I&#39;m not sure of the exact stats off the top of my head and don&#39;t want to switch windows on my phone haha but I&#39;m almost certain they were expecting around a 70% causality rate but in reality turned out to be 10%</p></pre>porcupine-racetrack: <pre><p>There is always a failure speech. Plan for every contingency. </p></pre>Brickie78: <pre><p>There was one for the moon landing too, IIRC</p></pre>RosewaterConstant: <pre><p>My grandpa landed on Omaha Beach that day. Continued to fight through France and into Belgium where he volunteered for air raids and fought in the Battle of the Bulge. After the war, he knew he had to clear his mind so he worked for the forestry service for 3 years, watching for fires in outlook towers in southwestern PA.</p></pre>Shasta-Daisies: <pre><p>My father landed at Omaha, and was later wounded in Hurtgen Forest.</p></pre>maclindsey24: <pre><p>I bet working in the forestry service for any amount of years would do wonders for PTSD</p></pre>hux__: <pre><p>Damn. Dude lived a helluva life. At least he got to cherish the land he fought form when he got back. Did he ever talk about the war with you? Any insights?</p></pre>TimBadCat: <pre><p>Outside Pittsburgh? Do you know what area?</p></pre>Flabergie: <pre><p>Here&#39;s to the men of the <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1st_Canadian_Parachute_Battalion">1st Canadian Parachute Battalion</a>, first Canadians in Normandy. </p></pre>Ayxcia: <pre><p>Broke through the German lines and right into France by a few km&#39;s fairly quickly. We didn&#39;t want to stop !</p></pre>THCequivalant: <pre><p>Germans feared the Canadians and their tenacity.</p> <p>Canadians Corps meant a brewing fight was comin&#39; their way. </p></pre>TheAltRightIsAlright: <pre><p>When our last Canadian, American, British, Australian, and all other brave Allied WWII survivors have passed on in the near future, it will be more important to hang onto their legacy than ever </p></pre>CarderSC2: <pre><p>Oh man. Assuming an average human lifespan, that time is coming soon. Within the next 3-5 years... <em>maybe</em> 10? if they are lucky? If you were 18 on the D-day landings, you&#39;d be ~91 today. Losing our last real connection to that time period makes me ... fearful. I don&#39;t want us to forget.</p></pre>Food4Thawt: <pre><p>3 Doors down from me was a guy who was at The Battle of the Bulge. He&#39;s 90+, has a sailboat that sits because he&#39;s too old to take it out, has a yard he cant mow cuz it&#39;s too weak to push the mower and too poor to hire someone out. He&#39;s got 4 grandchildren that use him for his pension and smoke cigarettes in his garage, a daughter that asks for money from 3 states away, and a M1 Garand mounted above his fireplace with his ribbons beside them in the glass case.</p> <p>Every 2 weeks I mow his lawn, bring him a root beer and we talk. He cant help telling me the same stories over and over again, but man...I&#39;ve never done anything 1/10th of as crazy as it was to actually fire your weapon in combat at 18 and 5 months. </p> <p>He still remembers how to say, &#34;We are American, Do You Want Some Bread?&#34;... in Dutch and French. </p> <p>Way to Live Cilas, Way to Live.</p> <p><strong>Mandatory Gold Edit: Thanks kind stranger.</strong> I&#39;ll try to get a picture of him drinking that root beer, I&#39;ll walk over with my mower in a couple days after I do my own yard. And I&#39;ve tried to get some more stories, but I mention the bread comment because he&#39;s super proud of it. He gave all his K ration &#39;bread&#39; away to the hungry folks that couldnt get any. My favorite story of his goes like this.</p> <p>He was sitting after a long firefight of taking an old Belgian city and they detonated a bridge so the german tanks couldnt retreat. After blowing the bridge he noticed a little girl under the rubble trembling. He gives her some bread with his memorized line and they proceed to let her ride on top of a tank to the next town and find someone to take her in. Eventually they found a family that knew her last name and were going to find her family for her. He was proud to wear the uniform and only got out because he hated standing in lines for EVERYTHING. But he was most proud of helping out a little girl who had lost her family and was hiding under a blown up bridge. </p> <p>What He has taught me this in our talks:</p> <p>Wars are not fought on distant battlefields by robots are they are today. They&#39;re fought by real people with dire consequences and leave us with giant holes in our humanity. All we can do is hopefully mend those holes with good deeds that require us to took at our fellow man as human. With the dignity of their humanity as the sole basis of our good will towards them, not our common beliefs or our common language. Simply Affirming their humanity and accepting that and only that; as the requirement; Is the the best way to fill the void that haunts us all.</p></pre>apcreddit: <pre><p>Man your story makes me want to take him out sailing so he can enjoy his boat and hear his stories. </p></pre>farmerjane: <pre><p>If you guys are anywhere near SF and don&#39;t know how to sail I would be glad to assist and get him back out on the water. </p></pre>wildebeestsandangels: <pre><p>My grandfather was at the Battle of the Bulge too. My mom said the only time he ever talked about it was when she was young kid and it was a very cold night he would tuck them in ridiculously tight, like a burrito, and say &#34;this is how we made it through Bastogne.&#34; He&#39;s been dead a while now, but he was a hell of guy, and I&#39;m glad your neighbor has some life in him and a good friend.</p></pre>Go_Habs_Go31: <pre><blockquote> <p>&#34;this is how we made it through Bastogne.&#34;</p> </blockquote> <p>I don&#39;t want to trivialize the subject (D-Day and WWII), but Episode 6 (Bastogne) of HBO&#39;s Band of Brothers is one of the finest episodes of television ever made. </p></pre>JimiSlew3: <pre><p>If he&#39;s comfortable you should ask him if you could record some talks. My Grandpop was a sailor on a hospital ship. When I was 8 (this was... nearly 30 years ago) I did a &#34;report&#34; on his service for school. Sadly it was lost and he died not long after I did it. Do it for history man, his kids don&#39;t seem to give a crap about it and we all want to hear his story about the little girl under the bridge. </p></pre>NotASpanishSpeaker: <pre><p>That&#39;d be cool! Ask him permission to record his stories, and to pass them along to a museum! </p></pre>drunkenknight9: <pre><p>One of my grandfathers was at the Battle of the Bulge and he was never shy to talk about the war but my other grandfather was in North Africa and Italy and later Holland and he absolutely never talked about it. He had told my father about how he got wounded in Italy and Holland but he was short about it. The last year he was alive we managed to get him home from hospice for the day to celebrate the 4th of July and out of the blue he told us how he got his bronze star. His unit got cut off somewhere in France for an entire week and 2/3rds of his unit was killed. He was awarded the bronze star for repeatedly running back out into enemy fire as their perimeter collapsed dragging his wounded comrades to their last safe position in the small pocket they were able to hold. The most unbelievable part was that they sent him back into combat after that campaign when they were taking Holland late in the war. IIRC he was in the 141st infantry. </p></pre>cencio5: <pre><p>I feel as if we forget this period that the same thing will happen again. </p></pre>Ayxcia: <pre><p>You need a ridge taken, call the Canadians. </p></pre>Red_Dog1880: <pre><p>Canadians liberated my little home town in Belgium, there&#39;s still a monument for them named after Corporal Arthur Winters. He was killed in an explosion after helping build a bridge to move troops over a canal.</p></pre>zadtheinhaler: <pre><p>My father-in-law hit Juno Beach. Much respect!</p></pre>Wookie_Veenau: <pre><p>My grandfather hit Juno in the first hour at 15 years old. He had previously been kicked out for lying about his age.</p></pre>kingtiger3: <pre><p>In the 80&#39;s I would hang out at a burger joint full of old guys, a few of which were on Juno, well they were old to me at the time. The priest that baptized me was 2nd wave Juno. My hometown was in the midst of it pretty hard. Their (they being the vets and family of vets) thinking was like this. D-day was planned, the US had first say in what goes on on the ground so they took the easier beaches. The UK got second pick, they took the next 2 easier beaches and left the last beach to Canada. If one beach failed on D-Day nobody wanted to be the guy that history would remember as the guy that lead the failed assault. Canada being full of political astute people just like the US and UK passed the first wave down to the lowest peon&#39;s they could, the North Shore regiment. If Juno failed it&#39;d be better for your legacy to be leading the third Canadian wave as they landed on another beach. Nobody was ducking getting into a fight, they all just knew that history was watching and they wanted to be on the right side of it. </p></pre>yousaydumbthings: <pre><p>Bullshit. Omaha was arguably the hardest beach to take. </p></pre>Falcorsc2: <pre><p>Omaha was the hardest beach to take. However Juno was the second hardest with only something like 100 less german infantry. I&#39;ve never seen his argument before. It&#39;s usually an argument about which beach was the most successful.</p> <p>If you want to get real technical it was Dieppe that was the hardest(5k canadian troops, 1k british involved), which resulted in close to 60% casualties and no objectives being accomplished. It wasn&#39;t on d day though, but it was arguably the test for it.</p></pre>excellent_name: <pre><p>My father and I are staying at a hotel on Juno Beach for the anniversary. It&#39;s been beautiful to meet other Americans, Canadians, Brits, and descendants of men who were here. I am a veteran myself, but I&#39;m smoking a cigarette on the coast right now, and I can&#39;t wrap my head around what these guys were walking in to. I&#39;ll be thanking everyone I can find today.</p></pre>FREEDOM_OR_FUCK_YOU: <pre><p>Cracking open a cold one for the boys that hit Omaha and Juno beach. Unlucky (and heroic) bastards.</p></pre>Maximusmith529: <pre><p>These guys were bad ass.</p></pre>elynwen: <pre><p>My Grandfather stormed Normandy on the 7th. He was part of the band of artillery soldiers, and remarkably he survived to tell the tale. Only once, though. He became a captain and was in charge of entertainment for British soldiers. He also liberated a concentration camp, and I hate that I forgot which one.</p> <p>He later encountered many people who survived the camps when he opened up a general practice. My Grandfather never really escaped the holocaust. It followed him throughout his life. As a doctor, as a psychiatrist. I cannot possibly be prouder of his memory.</p> <p>A final note: he never watched WWII movies. He said that they never fully captured D-Day, because movies can&#39;t replicate the smell. </p></pre>amuckinwa: <pre><p>My Dad was the same. I was born in 68 (my siblings were all born in the 50&#39;s) and he NEVER spoke of the war. It wasnt until I was in my 20&#39;s he began talking to us about it. He was at Dachau and he could not &#34;forgive&#34; the towns people because they knew what was going on in the camps, he understood why they didn&#39;t do anything but after seeing his friends die from NoRth Africa across Europe fighting he just couldn&#39;t reconcile the anger and understanding. He didnt hate the German people and was proud of his service but at the end of the war all of the civilians were so appreciative of the Americans he couldn&#39;t help but think &#34;you guys could have stopped this and didnt&#34;. Of course he explained it much better than I am. He died in 2006 and we are still trying to find any records or pictures of his time in the service (the army records burned in the 70&#39;s). I am proud of his service and proud of the lessons he taught me.</p></pre>GoBucks2012: <pre><p>Thanks for sharing. Thinking about the war pains me. The sacrifice of men like your grandfather is indescribable. </p></pre>rocketman0739: <pre><blockquote> <p>He also liberated a concentration camp, and I hate that I forgot which one.</p> </blockquote> <p>If you know which unit he was in, you could find out.</p></pre>yankee-white: <pre><p>My grandfather was a US Navy officer. While he watched WWII movies, he was rather specific that he only watched European or Africa theater dramas and documentaries. I suppose, somehow, he compartmentalized those and didn&#39;t want to relive the Pacific. </p></pre>flee_market: <pre><blockquote> <p>He also liberated a concentration camp, and I hate that I forgot which one.</p> </blockquote> <p>Records might still exist, if you have his full name and social (I&#39;m assuming you&#39;re American). </p></pre>CastBatt: <pre><p>If you know anything about him or his unit, you could easily look him up. I&#39;d love to help if I can, as I do it for a sort of job. And on the topic of movies, my grandfather said the exact same thing. He said they got everything wrong, and the ones that they got right, they could never fully add in the smells and the noises that you imagine you hear, but never really do. </p></pre>EmpathyIsAHabit: <pre><p>I wonder what they would think about &#34;The Pacific&#34; from HBO. The scene where they storm that beach was fucking horrific. I can&#39;t help but think that&#39;s exactly how it looked.</p></pre>CastBatt: <pre><p>Peleliu was amazingly brutal. That scene was very intense. I doubt he could watch it. I think nearly everyone I was with when I watched it got a little bothered. It&#39;s the same way with &#34;Hacksaw Ridge&#34;. A very tense feeling. </p></pre>Gwootten: <pre><p>Thank you for your addition to this post. Your grandfather was a brave man and we appreciate his service</p></pre>Socal_ftw: <pre><p>I had one grandpa on the eastern front in an axis artillery unit and the other an axis elected member of parliament. The stories they told were gripping and ending in tragedy. Fuck war. </p></pre>wtfduud: <pre><p>I&#39;m guessing it smelled like gunpowder and corpses?</p></pre>MarkTeixeira: <pre><p>Combat related, my grandpa 67 years ago was fighting as an 18 year old in the South Korean Army, had a grenade that blew off his toes on one foot. Passed away a few weeks ago, he didn&#39;t get to see a reunited Korea, took a war and cancer three times to take him out. Bless all the troops and RIP grandpa.</p></pre>booIeans: <pre><p>May he rest in peace.</p></pre>Maple_Cyrup: <pre><p>Now thats one tough motherfucker, don&#39;t let his name be forgotten. </p></pre>Brailledit: <pre><p>Kinda crazy for me... I just finished rewatching BoB 2 nights ago. I ordered Ambrose&#39;s book, and it just got here today. I can&#39;t wait to read it!</p></pre>Sweatsock_Pimp: <pre><p>The book is excellent, but, in my opinion, this might be the one instance where the movie was better than the book.</p></pre>Brailledit: <pre><p>Aww man! Still going to enjoy it I am sure. Winters is one of the best characters I have ever watched. Fuck I wish I had an officer like that when I was enlisted. I also ordered his biography :) </p></pre>ThrowThrow117: <pre><p>I read the book (twice) after watching the show. It&#39;s fantastic. Well worth it. The little details make it for me. Like the Americans becoming such great hunters of Germans they could smell their tobacco and leather. </p> <p>The second time I read it I actually went to Normandy and toured the area. I rented a car and did it with my wife. Amazing experience all around. </p></pre>pastorofmuppets95: <pre><p>My favorite little detail from the book vs the series was when Buck perfectly cooked a grenade and threw it at a German&#39;s head and they talk about how he was a catcher for UCLA before the war </p></pre>SunsetVampire: <pre><p>I agree. There are few places where the mini-series strayed from reality and in every case it added to the story or at the very least didn&#39;t detract. It&#39;s an amazing series because it&#39;s real. </p></pre>expletiveinyourmilk: <pre><p>I had the house to myself on Memorial Day. I had nothing planned, I was just going to cook some burgers and get some work done around the house. Started to cook the burgers and saw that HBO was playing a Band of Brothers marathon. I watched every episode. I have watched it through 3 or 4 times now and I still cry every time. Every time the real Dick Winters mentions how his grandson asked him &#34;Grandpa, were you a hero in the war?&#34; And Dick Winters starts to get choked up and he says that he told his grandson, &#34;No, but I served in the company of heroes.&#34;</p> <p>You can really tell that that man loved every single man that he served with and felt a deep connection to his company. And hearing all of the things the soldiers had to say about him, what an incredibly noble and tragic circumstance that created such beautiful relationships.</p></pre>NotKeithRichards: <pre><p>Dick Winter&#39;s book is also really great.</p></pre>amandeezie: <pre><p>My aunts (by marriage) Grandpa drove one of the boats onto the shore to drop soilders off on the beaches of Normandy. He has some pretty amazing stories. He&#39;s 91 and has all of his wits and more. Grandpa Wally is a G. </p></pre>fuzznacht: <pre><p>Would love an AMA or some thing some time if he is ok talking about it! That mind is a gold mine. </p></pre>thegrumpymechanic: <pre><p>If you can, get him to tell his stories with a recording device present.. Personal accounts from the source are getting harder to come by.</p></pre>pnzsaurkrautwerfer: <pre><p>This always gives me chills too:</p> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9fZ2Vmzp7Ic">https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9fZ2Vmzp7Ic</a></p> <p>It&#39;s the radio broadcast that alerted the French resistance the invasion was a go in the next 24 hours. Radio Londres sent messages in the clear from London on behalf of the resistance, but the messages themselves were code phrases, meaning certain things to a certain resistance group. </p> <p>This is where &#34;John (or Jean) has a long mustache&#34; comes from as a cultural reference, as that was representative of most messages, without context it means nothing, but it might be a signal that the Lyon area resistance was about to be raided, or that weapons drops were off for the day because of weather over the channel. </p> <p>The first lines of Chanson d&#39; automne by Paul Verlaine were basically the all points notification the liberation was at hand. And to that end I feel it marks the beginning of the end of the war in the west in many ways. </p></pre>cookiemikester: <pre><p>My grandfather was with the 82nd airborne but didn&#39;t jump because he was new to the unit. He landed on D-day + 1. I asked him what his job was and it was &#34;basically to find where the 82nd scattered to.&#34;</p></pre>amuckinwa: <pre><p>Lol my Dad went in with the Pathfinders the night before...they ALL had problems like that! Its those little things that really humanizes war missions. Glad your grandfather found his unit and made it home!</p></pre>Kerberos42: <pre><p>Watching Band of Brothers it truly amazes me that guys were able to regroup at all. Imagine jumping out of an airplane that&#39;s either being shot at or is already hit, into the dead of night over a strange land, with the threat of an enemy bullet at every corner. And this in a time where there were no instant radio communications (other than those massive backpack radios) GPS, UAVs, or all seeing AWACS to guide you. </p> <p>You hit the ground, how in the hell would you even have a clue where to go, if you weren&#39;t one of the guys with a map tasked with finding the targets?</p></pre>VolcanosaurusHex: <pre><p>My great grandpa was 82nd airborne. He mentioned landing in a bog and losing a bunch of gear. Had to sneak past nazi patrols and would slit throats of the last guy or 2 as he reunited back with his unit. Tough sonofabitch.</p> <p>Just visited his grave this memorial day. He passed 5 years ago at 82. Reformed alcoholic. Family man of a bunch of sons and a daughter. Boxer and coach. And still had biceps as big as popeye to his death. </p> <p>Our family motto. You gotta be half tough. And damned if he wasn&#39;t. Because thinking of him always brings a tear to my eye.</p> <p>Rip Grandpa. Your legacy is eternal.</p></pre>when_the_tide_comes: <pre><p>Pretty incredible that June 6th is Memorial Day for fallen heroes in Korea. Coincidence maybe!</p></pre>Stlbluenotesfan: <pre><p>The Greatest generation.... gives me chills every year on June 6th just thinking of what they were going through... god can you imagine.... some bad boys for sure. </p></pre>ruralexcursion: <pre><p>Also very good is: &#34;The War&#34; by Ken Burns; a riveting 14 hour hour documentary.</p></pre>lebaronslebaron: <pre><p>Just finished it. So good! </p></pre>MetalisDead: <pre><p>Trying to imagine hearing that speech as a soldier, thinking &#34;Shit, I wish I didn&#39;t goof off so much in training.&#34; then, &#34;I wish the guys next to me didn&#39;t goof off so much in training.&#34;</p></pre>UWillNeverGetDis: <pre><p>They were Airborne. They definitely goofed off but the last thing they would do is doubt themselves or the guys next to them.</p></pre>AgoraiosBum: <pre><p>Nobody in training before 1944 thought &#34;I&#39;m sure I won&#39;t be seeing combat and its fine to goof off.&#34; Also, plenty were killed in training too.</p></pre>MetalisDead: <pre><p>You&#39;re probably right. I was in the Navy in &#39;08. That&#39;s all we did was talk shit and goof off.</p></pre>doeslikecheesecake: <pre><p>Just 2008? I thought it had to be 2+ years?</p></pre>yankee-white: <pre><p>I presume he is talking about basic/training in &#39;08.</p> <p>That, or he was discharged.</p></pre>THCequivalant: <pre><p>only 20% of the volunteers for the Canadian Paratroopers were accepted/passed. Best of the best. And just knowing that, I don&#39;t think they worried about their brothers next to them.</p></pre>AmethystZhou: <pre><p>You can trust the fellow next to you with your life, as long as he&#39;s a paratrooper!</p></pre>TraitorKiller: <pre><p>God everytime I hear Eisenhower&#39;s pre-D Day speech it gives me the feels. Especially this line</p> <blockquote> <p>But this is the year 1944.</p> </blockquote></pre>TendiesOnTheFloor: <pre><p>My grandpa was d-day plus 5 or 6... tomorrow I&#39;m going to make a post about his story. He&#39;s 93 and I want to share his story with you before it&#39;s too late</p></pre>ukazes: <pre><p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R3gjS8AnWVI">In the middle of the night CBS News did a breaking news alert about German reports of an Allied invasion of France</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>Shortly after 1:00 AM Eastern War Time, the Berlin Radio opened its news program with a so-called &#34;invasion announcement.&#34; Columbia&#39;s shortwave listening station here in New York heard the Berlin Radio say, and I quote: &#34;Here is a special bulletin. Early this morning the long-awaited British and American invasion began when paratroops landed in the area of the Somme estuary. The harbor of Le Havre is being fiercely bombarded at the present moment. Naval forces of the German navy are off the coast fighting with enemy landing vessels. We&#39;ve just brought you a special bulletin.&#34; End of the quotation. That is the invasion announcement as heard from the Berlin Radio by Columbia&#39;s shortwave listening station.</p> </blockquote> <p>Edward R. Murrow and his team of CBS war correspondents known as the &#34;Murrow Boys&#34; covered the Normandy landings from multiple sectors. Most weren&#39;t able to get their broadcasts out until days after the invasion because of the chaos. Some of the broadcasts are below with excerpts.</p> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I8xkQ05VT_k">Richard C. Hottelet was aboard a B-26 Marauder flying over Utah Beach during H-Hour</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>What I saw was literally the last minute of the invasion preparation and the first minute of invasion. We were low, but we were traveling fast, and we could not tell how the battle for the beaches would develop. But if the ground action goes as smoothly as the air preparation, we can hope for the best.</p> </blockquote> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y8rhKYwhx5I">Charles Collingwood was on a landing craft off Utah Beach</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>We&#39;re standing here—it&#39;s an absolutely incredible and fantastic sight. I don&#39;t know whether it&#39;s possible to describe it to you or not. It&#39;s late in the afternoon. The sun is going down. The sea is choppy and the beach is lined with men and materiel and guns, trucks, vehicles of all kinds. On either side of us there are pillars of smoke perhaps a mile, two miles away, which are rising from enemy shelling. And further back we can see the smoke and results of our own shelling. Looking behind us we can see the big ships and the—some of the transports which have brought the troops in.</p> <p>. . .</p> <p>This place even smells like an invasion. It has a curious odor which we all associate with modern war. It&#39;s a smell of oil and high explosives and burning things. All—thank you. Come on over here! [Inaudible], who is one of the sailors, has just come with a handful of sand because he heard me say a while ago that what I wanted to do most of all was just to get ashore and reach down and take up a handful of sand and say &#34;This is France!&#34; and I&#39;ve got it in my hands. France at last, after four years.</p> </blockquote> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uZijPHagJXs">Charles Shaw in London</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>Earlier this morning, the telephone rang at 7 AM. It was Ed Murrow. He said, &#34;Better get dressed and wait for a call from me.&#34; A new world speed record for getting dressed was promptly set. The dressing was accomplished against a background of heavy sky noise, the sound of great fleets of planes. They were too high to be seen, but their roar seemed to fill the sky, and the planes seemed to be everywhere.</p> </blockquote> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hVI-4lFi0SE">Bill Downs, who landed with British forces, reported from &#34;somewhere in Normandy&#34; a week after D-Day</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>Some time when we&#39;re not so busy, history will record the battle of the Commandos who landed behind the German defenses and so disrupted the Nazis that they were firing at each other. Or of the Canadians who walked point blank into German shellfire to silence these batteries.</p> <p>And the most glorious single action of the whole invasion was performed by the American assault force. They clung to their position literally by their fingernails. They fought as no Americans have ever fought before. They were outnumbered; outgunned with odds twenty to one against them.</p> </blockquote> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPsN1HOiWxQ">Larry LeSueur, who landed at Utah Beach, reported from the Normandy battlefront and described his D-Day experience</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>It was very rough on the Channel, and after hours of seasickness we all felt pretty gloomy. Most of us had spent the time resting in our soaking wet [inaudible] waves had crossed over the sides of our little landing craft. But after a sleepless night, D-Day dawned. And we tramped forth from our barge towards tiny personnel assault craft. And with the regimental combat team, we began a rough ride into the beach.</p> <p>It was a fantastic sight. We could see great geysers of sand shooting up from the beachhead as our planes drenched the area with bombs in great green and yellow flashes. Every time a salvo of bombs hit the beach, our assault craft seemed to bounce back about ten feet. We were the first regimental command post to make the landing.</p> <p>I don&#39;t remember wading ashore—I think I must have just skipped in to get my feet on the ground. Every one of us felt the same way. We didn&#39;t care what happened to us as long as we could get off that bucking, bouncing boat.</p> <p>The din of gunfire was deafening, and the first thing I vividly remember was a little sergeant with a Brooklyn accent. He was standing on the beach, and he said to me with a grin, &#34;Boy, we made it.&#34; Out of all things, he handed me a cigar.</p> <p>The stunned Germans defending the beach were being gathered in, and I remember their tall, blond Nazi captain. Dressed immaculately, he was, and as arrogant as ever. He refused to lie down with the rest of his men, although German shellfire was hitting the beach, and when my colleague Bob Landry of Life magazine tried to take his picture, the Nazi officer turned his back on him and on the whole American landing with deepest scorn.</p> <p>A few minutes later a German shell hit the beach, and the German captain went down forever. He was killed by his own shellfire.</p> </blockquote></pre>FatTurret: <pre><p>I&#39;ve developed a habit of watching Saving Private Ryan every June 6, no matter where I am. Today is no exception. I&#39;m currently at the bit where Miller is explaining to Reiben what griping is. Gonna include Band of Brothers to the queue today, thanks for the reminder, OP!</p></pre>fatpat: <pre><p>Me too. I&#39;m debating whether to watch it in a few minutes or tomorrow night.</p></pre>Go_Habs_Go31: <pre><blockquote> <p>I&#39;m currently at the bit where Miller is explaining to Reiben what griping is</p> </blockquote> <p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DaVfHntwVc4" rel="nofollow">https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DaVfHntwVc4</a></p></pre>abattlescar: <pre><p>I literally started watching BoB 2 days ago. I saw one of the date stamps and I thought to myself, &#34;Wait a minute, that&#39;s today&#34;</p></pre>Decade_Late: <pre><p>Watching for the first time? I&#39;m envious - I wish I could watch it again for the first time.</p> <p>Do yourself a favor - single-screen it. Pay attention. It&#39;s worth it.</p></pre>yousaydumbthings: <pre><p>I&#39;ve never seen it. Need to.</p></pre>Decade_Late: <pre><p>If you&#39;re in the states, a free trial of HBO will let you stream it.</p></pre>Rather_Unfortunate: <pre><p>It&#39;s honestly the best TV series ever made about the war by a significant margin, and that&#39;s no exaggeration.</p></pre>MLBinCLTv2: <pre><p>I was in Normandy 10 days ago and took this pano on Omaha Beach. Powerful place!</p> <p><a href="https://imgur.com/a/yaka4">Omaha Beach</a> </p></pre>socrates_scrotum: <pre><p>Now imagine running up that beach with about 100 pounds on your back. Allied soldiers had 3 days worth of supplies in the packs. And you are being shot at.</p></pre>flee_market: <pre><p>100 <em>waterlogged</em> pounds. Half of them stepped off the ramp and right into water over their heads.</p></pre>IntincrRecipe: <pre><p>The total load with a BAR and your three days worth of stuff only actually totaled in at about 60-70 pounds. And 20 of that is just the BAR. If you&#39;re standard infantry, then you can bump that down to about 50-60 pounds due to the M1 rifle weighing only about 10 pounds.</p></pre>socrates_scrotum: <pre><p>Still, I couldn&#39;t run across 100-200 yards of beach with 50-60 pounds on my back in a straight line let alone around all of the stuff on the beach that day. </p></pre>IntincrRecipe: <pre><p>Well, when you look at how the weight is distributed you&#39;ll notice that the kit itself doesn&#39;t weigh the full 50-60 pounds, the the summertime your uniform would be lighter. web gear and supplies itself is only about 30-40 pounds. The rest is your uniform and rifle. And if you&#39;re looking at winter setups for the US during that time then the weight is the same, but just your uniform would come in at about 30 pounds due to all the wool and layers being worn. But I can&#39;t do that either so I get where you&#39;re coming from. I&#39;ve been wanting to get into ww2 reenacting though so I need to work on that kind of stuff.</p></pre>Johnny_Leon: <pre><p>I was there last weekend, such an amazing experience. Normandy is extremely grateful towards the Allies.</p></pre>flee_market: <pre><p>My grandfather was an artilleryman for the US Army in WW2.</p> <p>I never found out exactly what unit or where they were/what they did.. I&#39;ll look it up one of these days, if I can find out his social security number - hopefully the Army used the SSN as the identifier for the soldier back then as they do now.</p> <p>He never mentioned much about his time in the war - he was already in his 80&#39;s by the time I got old enough to start asking questions about it. </p> <p>But he did tell me one story about how he and his buddies were manning a gun one day, and a German panzer appeared over the top of a hill a little ways off.</p> <p>It stopped, clearly observing them.</p> <p>They frantically traversed their gun toward the panzer and depressed it enough to point it at the tank for direct-fire (not generally recommended and not what artillery is meant for at all), and took a shot at it. </p> <p>Near miss - it impacted the hillside. But that was enough to convince the panzer that maybe they should probe somewhere else. So the panzer reversed off the hill and didn&#39;t reappear. The fact that the tank was alone makes me think it was part of a mechanized recon unit; if an entire tank battalion had been pushing I probably would never have been born.</p> <p>Strange how the decisions of a few panicked men (many of them hardly &#34;men&#34;, younger than I am today) could&#39;ve easily gone the other way and kept me from ever existing at all.</p></pre>CastBatt: <pre><p>Somewhere, I remember reading that it was not uncommon for lone panzers to roam freely and do reconnaissance for advancing tank units, as German panzers were fairly well off against their counterparts. Also, I find the idea of using artillery as a point blank weapon very comical, and it must have given your grandfather and his buddies a hell of an unexpected rush to try it. If you have pictures of him, I&#39;d suggest using both his SSN and his unit patch as identifiers. Google search is a lot more useful in my opinion for finding that stuff, not just the National Archives website.</p></pre>KrisBook: <pre><p>Also don&#39;t forget the frogmen - a very small force with a major role on D-Day that aren&#39;t that well known.</p></pre>rielephant: <pre><p>I met one of the frogmen a few years ago. His name is Ernie Corvese, and he was the only member of his team of eight to survive Omaha Beach. The other seven never even made it to shore; their landing craft took a direct hit. </p></pre>amuckinwa: <pre><p>My Dad was in the 502nd who were held back because they were battle worn. The men knew something big was going to happen and several volunteered to go. My dad was one of them, he was one of the &#34;bodyguards&#34; that went in the night before with Pathfinders. He was on plane 12. If you look at the pictures of the men you can tell who were &#34;new&#34; and who had fighting experience by their uniforms also the experienced soldiers knew you had less chance of getting hit if you greased up (painted your skin dark) and you look scarier in daylight. If you find a pic of plane 12 my Dad is under the star on the right with the HEAVILY greased face and shockingly white hair. Years later when Dad coached little League his team ALWAYS heavily applied charcoal to keep the sun out of their eyes and to intimidate their opposition.</p></pre>GIGOHOME: <pre><p>Uncle Frank, medic, 1st Infantry, 2nd wave Omaha Beach. Came home a changed man and not for the better.</p></pre>Brother_Shme: <pre><p>I have to binge BOB now. Thank you kind sir or madam.</p></pre>skinnyirishman: <pre><p>I had four great uncles involved in the invasion. Three paratroopers split between the 82nd and 101st. The fourth was in a landing craft. When the ramp fell, everyone in the boat was killed except for my great uncle. Two of the paratroopers were brothers. When my father asked them why they signed up to be paratroopers years later, they said because it payed 50 bucks extra a month. They would have more money to send back to their mother. All four of them were just farm boys from Vermont, but they joined up because they felt it was the right thing to do. Heroes one and all.</p></pre>VolcanosaurusHex: <pre><p>Respect. I just posted a little above this. My great Grandpa was 82nd. He had a few children as America was ramping up for war. He kept getting into fights when people called him out for not joining. He became a paratrooper just to prove a point. Tough s.o.b and never seemed affected to us children about the war. He actually enjoyed sharing stories about it. </p> <p>Heroes as you said. Eternally. </p></pre>HoodedLum: <pre><p>My great grandfather was an American soldier who stormed Normandy, and continued the fight into the heart of Nazi Germany. The war messed him up pretty bad, and when he got home he&#39;d never turn off any of the lights in his house because he was scared that the Germans were going to come for him. To my Great Grandfather and all of the veterans that fought against Fascism, thank you. </p></pre>flstc1981: <pre><p>Really requires you to put everything into perspective. </p></pre>JibJabJake: <pre><p>Went to church and hunted with two men that served in WWII. One was in the navy and never stepped foot on a boat the entire war. The other landed on D-Day and his platoons job was to take out artillery on a cliff. Said they landed and where they were the artillery wasn&#39;t firing. Once they made it to the top of the cliff the artillery turned out to be telephone poles painted to look like artillery. He never talked much about anything else to me about the rest of the war besides he hopes no generation ever sees what they witnessed across Europe. My grandpa&#39;s first cousin was a tank driver and when they entered Germany two girls came running out of some hedge rows to escape the fighting on their farm. He ended up marrying one of the girls. She always told us how horrible the Nazis were. Not many of her family survived the war. </p></pre>CastBatt: <pre><p>I&#39;m guessing the second man was with the 2nd Ranger Battalion, without a doubt. They landed at Pointe du Hoc a few hours before the initial invasion itself to destroy six 155mm guns that could&#39;ve massacres the boys on Omaha and Utah beaches. They ended up finding the guns lined up in a field behind the initial battery positions, which were on the over 100 foot cliff face.</p></pre>jansencheng: <pre><p><em>begins playing Primo Victoria</em></p> <p>Gonna need to compile all the WW2 Sabaton songs to loop for the next 48 hours or so.</p></pre>tdud123: <pre><p>THROUGH THE GATES OF HELL</p></pre>traumadramallama: <pre><p>Every time I see something about D-Day, I&#39;m reminded of my grandfather. I never got to meet him unfortunately, but the one quote I remember from him is &#34;During training, you were crawling through deer guts. In battle, you were crawling through your friends&#39; guts.&#34;</p></pre>JayBarangus: <pre><p>Right now (about 6:30 local time) 73 years ago, Allied infantry and armored divisions are beginning to hit the beach.</p></pre>bad-at-this: <pre><p>My grandfather was in the 82nd Airborne, and I was lucky enough to visit Normandy with my him for the 55th anniversary, and got to see the field where he landed on D-Day. The field was flooded, but he got stuck in a tree, so he was the only guy in his plane that didn&#39;t land in the water. The stories he had were alternately amazing, heartbreaking, hysterical, and absolutely mind blowing. That trip was one of the most incredible experiences of my life. He passed away about 5 years ago, but I&#39;ll never forget the example he set - after all he went through, he was the funniest and most laid back person I&#39;ve ever known. </p></pre>Firearmsarefun: <pre><p>The letter from Col Sink to the members of the 506th PIR is one of the most inspirational pieces I have ever read. </p> <p>Soldiers of the regiment: June 5, 1944 - D-DAY</p> <p>Today, and as you read this, you are en route to that great adventure for which you have trained for over two years.</p> <p>Tonight is the night of nights.</p> <p>Tomorrow throughout the whole of our homeland and the Allied world the bells will ring out the tidings that you have arrived, and the invasion for liberation has begun.</p> <p>The hopes and prayers of your dear ones accompany you, the confidence of your high commanders goes with you. The fears of the Germans are about to become a reality.</p> <p>Let us strike hard. When the going is tough, let us go harder. Imbued with faith in the rightness of our cause, and the power of our might, let us annihilate the enemy where found.</p> <p>May God be with each of you fine soldiers. By your actions let us justify His faith in us.</p> <p>Colonel Robert Sink Regimental Commander, 506th P.I.R, 101st Airborne Division</p></pre>StaplerLivesMatter: <pre><p><em><del>C-130</del> C-53 rollin&#39; down the strip...</em></p> <p>The scale of the forces arrayed that day, on both sides, defies imagination. I cannot remotely imagine jumping out of a plane or being kicked out of a landing craft into the middle of it.</p></pre>texanseasky: <pre><p>I actually just finished Band of Brothers again the other day, having started on Memorial Day. Very good show, with some very tough and emotional scenes. Fucking Buck Compton&#39;s reaction to Toye and Guarnere getting hit in Bastogne brings me to tears every time. Such a real show.</p></pre>RoyalYoshi: <pre><p>Every year around this time, we visit my dad&#39;s family in New Orleans and I always get us to go on June 6, because it was a very important day in the war. Will be going tomorrow!! </p></pre>mrgeekguy: <pre><p>General Eisenhowers speech if it went south:</p> <blockquote> <p>Our landings in the Cherbourg-Havre area have failed to gain a satisfactory foothold and I have withdrawn the troops. My decision to attack at this time and place was based upon the best information available. The troops, the air and the Navy did all that Bravery and devotion to duty could do. If any blame or fault attaches to the attempt it is mine alone.&#34;</p> </blockquote></pre>NibNet69: <pre><p>Col. Shames of Band of Brothers did a lecture at my university this past semester and touted Band of Brothers as being a &#34;shit&#34; retelling of what happened. That said, it is a great watch. </p></pre>FuckModz: <pre><p>Yeh my grandpa was in the 506th 101 airborne as a officer and parachuted behinde enemy lines that day. His plane exploded right after he jumped out . When he got on the ground a soldier tried shooting him but his gun jammed and my grandpa had to knife him. Supposedly he took his armband. He also was in bastogne firing a Thompson off the roof of a jeep in a Nazi filled town. He has a silver cup made from the eagles nest silver with his name and 506th carved into it. It was obvously made by hammer it&#39;s pretty interesting. He did and up getting injured by artillery shrapnel from it exploding in a tree near him. I wish I asked him more about his experiences . My grandma knows alot though, It just brought up bad memeories for him so I didn&#39;t want to ask.</p></pre>shotputlover: <pre><p>When my great grandmother found out my great uncle was going to be a paratrooper she fainted on the spot. It&#39;s amazing how brace those men were and all of there deployments into hostile territory not knowing if the attacks would succeed. Also the famous paratrooper who got stuck on the chapel in saint Mere Eglise was my great uncles best friend and that paratrooper was a celebrity in that town years afterwards.</p></pre>St_Jamrog: <pre><p>We&#39;d never get a speech like that today in the same situation. Just some damn useless hashtag</p></pre>malenurse707: <pre><p>Just saw the movie&#34; Imitation Game &#34;, the role that team had in the war needs to known by everyone. </p></pre>cardboardguru13: <pre><p>Major liberties taken by the film:</p> <ul> <li><p>A team developed the code breaking machine. It was not the work of only Turing. About 200 machines were constructed.</p></li> <li><p>The scene where they decide to let a German attack on a ship go through because they have to keep their code breaking secret... never happened.</p></li> <li><p>Turing got along with his coworkers far better than depicted.</p></li> <li><p>Joan Clarke got her job on the recommendation of a well-placed person who knew her, and not from a crossword advertisement in the newspaper. </p></li> </ul></pre>PM_your_front_bum: <pre><p>This is where modern generations can&#39;t relate to anything at all. </p> <p>They are busy arguing about how many genders there are, privileges and all that bullshit. Forgetting about why society is setup the way it is.</p> <p>That said, there can be no doubt in anyone&#39;s mind that if shit hit the fan today or tomorrow, today&#39;s generation of men would step up and throw themselves into the meat grinder once again.</p></pre>enormuschwanzstucker: <pre><p>After they played it on Memorial Day, I had to rewatch the series again. It&#39;s so good, it brings so many emotions.</p></pre>ififcanIhaveacoatplz: <pre><p>This is a great address from ike. It really is. I enjoy the speech from patton just a little better tho. DDAY os?probably what made me interested in history to begin with. Spe ifically John Wayne and the movie <em>The Longest Day</em> taken from field marshal Erwin rommels quote saying when the allies invade it &#34;will be the longest day&#34;</p></pre>asta85: <pre><p>That is probably my favorite John Wayne film. It causes me to reflect on so much. </p></pre>IL0VECHEESE: <pre><p>I&#39;ve been reading beyond band of brothers by dick winters the last couple of days and I&#39;m the same age as he was on D-day, it&#39;s strange to think he was going to war at that age while I read about it in his book.</p></pre>DarthPun: <pre><p>My Great Uncle was selected one of the officers selected to lead the landing on Juno Beach for his regiment. Incredible to think that at the current time of writing he would have been crossing the channel preparing himself mentally and physically to lead his company to victory in the most famous and influential battle of modern history. </p></pre>koliberry: <pre><p>I, for one, have heartfelt honor and gratitude for all of them. It was a defining moment in time. Awful on top of awful. A lot of people did heroic things beyond what they knew they could do, and others were dead before they even could understand what they were seeing. </p></pre>voiceofgromit: <pre><p>My uncle was in the forward observer corps. They were parachuted into Normandy the night before D-Day so they could direct fire.</p></pre>ArthurTheAstronaut: <pre><p>Didn&#39;t watch..but damn. That is a sobering thought. Especially for someone my age(26) because a lot of those kids were much younger than me. Respect to the Nth power.</p></pre>Herp_McDerp: <pre><p>Thank you Grandpa for the sacrifice you made to help all of your grandkids have an amazing life. I love you and always miss you</p></pre>Hawklet98: <pre><p>Thise are some of the best words. Ike must have had a good brain...</p></pre>Mrbeankc: <pre><p>My grandfather was preparing his landing craft to land on Utah Beach. Because they needed so many landing craft operators a bunch of the Pacific guys were shipped over to Europe for Overlord and he was one of them. He got his troops ashore on D-Day but he lost the landing craft (He lost 5 landing craft during the war. 1 at Normandy and 4 in the Pacific) and ended up stuck on the beach helping the medics for several days before he could return to his ship. </p> <p>My other grandfather landed later and would drive a Sherman tank across France. In the Battle of the Bulge he survived a fight with a tiger tank. He help liberate a concentration camp. He saw a lot of action in the fight across Europe but my grandmother said it was the concentration camp that gave him nightmares after the war. </p> <p>Not bad for an insurance salesman and farm boy which is what they were before the war. </p></pre>jrpTREY5: <pre><p>Crazy to me that it was 73 years ago, also makes me very sad we&#39;re losing these men as they are living history.</p></pre>GaslightManifesto: <pre><p>I seriously can&#39;t even begin to wrap my mind around the fucking balls on the men who stormed those beaches. Watching film, television, and video game recreations of it gets my heart rate up, actually bring there, and running against that wall of Nazi gunfire? </p> <p>Braver men than I could ever be. </p></pre>thejofgod: <pre><p>Last summer I went to Normandy and went to many museums but at the Pegasus Bridge Memorial museum, I happened to go at the same time than the 6th Airborne Division Veterans day. There were only two or three WWII veterans but still, it had a huge effect on me to see people who actually fought, and not just the movies. I&#39;m 20 so WWII always felt to me as a very distant time, alive only in the collective memory. </p> <p>Never forget the sacrifices. </p></pre>PM_ME_HKT_PUFFIES: <pre><p>I live in Southampton, on the south coast of the UK. This area was one of the main jumping off points for D-Day, and was chosen for US forces (rather than British, Canadian etc).</p> <p>The troops themselves were moved close to the coast as the date firmed up, many were sleeping in shops, car parks, in the streets etc especially as there were a few delays for weather etc.</p> <p><a href="http://imgur.com/TtMJxZy" rel="nofollow">Here</a> is a wall near where I live, where US soldiers carved their names and messages to loved ones.</p> <p>All our beaches were used for loading up ships, and <a href="http://hmvf.co.uk/forumvb/showthread.php?7985-Lepe-Beach-7th-amp-8th-June-2008" rel="nofollow">this one</a> has a yearly re-enactment, with exactly the same vehicles, tents uniforms etc to match photos of that day.</p></pre>Drmite: <pre><p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZm4zseMok0" rel="nofollow">https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZm4zseMok0</a></p> <p>Personally I get shivers whenever I hear this. Thinking about young men sacrificing their lives in the name of the allies. Insane, such a selfless act. </p></pre>Grindstaff: <pre><p>Apologies for the repost. Times Square, morning of 6th June 1944:</p> <p><a href="https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7493/15944038808_a049f08ec3_h.jpg" rel="nofollow">https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7493/15944038808_a049f08ec3_h.jpg</a></p></pre>marksor_13: <pre><p>I&#39;ve been meaning to watch this series again. It is really a masterpiece IMO. Probably I&#39;ll watch it after I finish watching Silicon Valley. </p></pre>byejan242017: <pre><p>I will never forget how the first guys on beach knew they were going to get hammered. Seeing Saving Private Ryan brought this home to me.</p> <p>Veterans and fallen soldiers, I will not forget your sacrifice! In this and other battles. Allies including the valiant Red Army and the people of Russia and other republics who maybe gave up the most of any. The brave English people who maybe saved the whole world from fascism by holding out against the nazis. The resistance in the occupied countries and the Free French and Polish fighters. Even Italy who never had her heart in the war and whose individual soldiers often resisted the nazis in their own way. The soldiers of the Philippines and other allies not mentioned. The American soldiers of Japanese ancestry who distinguished themselves by their valor in Europe for a country who treated them badly. The people of China who also suffered and fought on the Allied side.</p></pre>collectiveindividual: <pre><p>And 73 years later the UK spurns the peace the Europe for bendy bananas. </p></pre>datums: <pre><p>We should remember in these politically uncertain times, that the people of the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada, pulled off the most impressive feat of arms in history, by working together. </p></pre>
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