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Thread: 6 June 1944

  1. #1
    Sculpture on 2 wheels
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    6 June 1944

    D-DAY
    The Greatest Generation was hard at work on this date in 1944.
    Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno, and Sword.

    Over 160,000 soldiers, with 195,700 naval and merchant navy personnel in over 5,000 ships going to war. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normandy_landings

     photo D-DayOrderofBattle_zps070b7e1e.jpg
     photo 1944_NormandyLST_zps2cb14529.jpg
     photo d23_0p012623_zpsab372b4a.jpg
     photo orig_zps7d0c30ad.gif
     photo 20060523141424_cambridge_zpseef55ff4.jpg

  2. #2
    Anphaque II
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    Yep. 69 years ago today.


    Thanks for sharing the pics.

  3. #3
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    thanks for posting, it's a nice tribute.

    fwiw, my 91-year old dad is a WWII vet. he was in the Navy and served in the Pacific as a pharmacist's mate on an LST (Landing Ship, Tank).

    the third photo shows several of these with their bow doors open...
    eff all y'all...

  4. #4
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Was thinking about the date this morning. Thanks.

  5. #5
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    I spent 31 years in the military, still hanging on these days as a dependent....I can't begin to fathom the balls it took to step off those LSTs in the early waves at Normandy.

    Truly, a miraculous generation. Thanks for the thread, it's a great reminder.

    On a related note--this week--4-7 June marks the anniversary of the Battle of Midway. Only six months after Pearl Harbor, a deciding point in the War in the Pacific.

    As I said, truly a miraculous generation.
    Bill

    “You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing...We can make the best or the worst of it."

  6. #6
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Currently reading "The Guns At Last Light: the war in Western Europe 1944-1945" by Rick Atkinson. Nine hundred pages of detailed description of the finial months of WWII in Europe. The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945 (Liberation Trilogy): Rick Atkinson: 9780805062908: Amazon.com: Books

  7. #7
    Jerkhard Sirdribbledick
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    Those two pics of the landing are just mind-boggling.
    "He groaned when we hung the rope over the tree but was relieved to see the white pinata."
    -- Gut
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  8. #8
    Cranky Old Bastard
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    Yes, the realistic movies like Saving Private Ryan and Band of Brothers show how horrible today really was for so many.

    I was in the Navy for six years and still can't imagine the courage it took to hit that beach or drop behind enemy lines.
    "When you know absolutely nothing, anyone who knows 1% more than nothing sounds like an expert."

  9. #9
    half-fast
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    Thanks for posting this. Not only can't I imagine what it must have been like to get out there that day, I can hardly fathom how the hell they ever coordinated something like that.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sun Rider View Post
    Currently reading "The Guns At Last Light: the war in Western Europe 1944-1945" by Rick Atkinson. Nine hundred pages of detailed description of the finial months of WWII in Europe. The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945 (Liberation Trilogy): Rick Atkinson: 9780805062908: Amazon.com: Books
    I'm about one third of the way through the first book of the trilogy, An Army at Dawn. I'm planning to read all three.

  11. #11
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    The LST was built here in Evansville and there still is an operating one here. LST 325.

    Can't believe it was so long ago. Any time I go to the VA clinic here I try to talk to the older veterans. Many love to share stories with younger vets like myself so I enjoy it.

  12. #12
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    6 June 1944

    Wow. Thanks for reminding me.

  13. #13
    Cranky Old Bastard
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    "When you know absolutely nothing, anyone who knows 1% more than nothing sounds like an expert."

  14. #14
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    I stopped by the nursing home to visit my dad this evening and we talked about his time spent aboard ship (LST 1043).

    altho his ship didn't engage in much combat, the most notable event was being strafed by a lone Japanese aircraft, he still has some interesting stories. as the ship's 'doc,' he tended to a variety of wounded sailors and marines...he always regretted not going to med school after the war.

    I have a photo of the ship being launched at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard during a blizzard and another of the entire ship's company standing at attention on the main deck.

    my dad looks pretty sharp in his uniform, makes me proud...
    eff all y'all...

  15. #15
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    Had a chance to play golf a few years ago with a member of the 82 Airborne who dropped in behind the lines. Lewis saw the 75 mm howitzer on display at the entrance to the course and the stories started to flow. He said they dropped the 75's in with them. Lewis was in the same unit as John Steele (made famous by Red Buttons in the Longest Day). He said Steele was always getting someone to answer for him at role call since liked to sleep in.
    Got irritated in the clubhouse when some people behind us were complaining of slow play. They were gone before I had a chance to speak up but I figured an 85 year old D-Day vet could play at whatever pace he wanted.

  16. #16
    Pencil of death
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    My Grandfather was at Normandy.

    He refused to talk about the war. He lied and said he'd done 'supply stuff' in England. When he passed on we found his military records, medals, etc.. Truth was, he'd been in fighting from Normandy to the fall of Germany.

    If you ever come to Boston, you can take a tour on a "duck boat" an amphibious craft used at D-Day. You go through the city, into the canal locks and along the Charles River.

    It's a very moving experience, keeping in mind what it took to keep Boston free.
    "Do not argue with an idiot. He will only drag you down to his level and beat you on experience." (Twain)

    "I used these numbers as an example to make a point." (AM999)

    "1/2 of you are wrong and the other .5 are incorrect!" (FlynG)

    "Taking crazy things seriously is a serious waste of time." (Murakami)

  17. #17
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    Bullvine, you put together a nice tribute/post, thanks.

  18. #18
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    On a slightly related note...

    There is a bike shop near here (Chicago west-burbs) that was founded by a truly beautiful person who loves to share his story. He was at the Battle of the Bulge and has photos hanging over the counter. He met his wife in France and brought her back. They raised a family and the kids now run the store... the old man still sticks around, mostly to share his stories, I imagine. He certainly doesn't have many years left.

    Point is, get out there and talk to these guys while you can. The vets appreciate it, and you are a better person for listening to what they have to say.
    @OP thanks for this thread!

  19. #19
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    Great thread.

    My uncle was in the 82nd Airborne and made three combat jumps, the first on D-Day. He finished law school on the G.I. Bill, and became a circuit court judge.

    He married a French gal he met when he kicked down her door while she was taking a bath. He said he learned a few new French words over the next few seconds. She is my aunt Denise, and one of my favorite kin.

    Truly the greatest generation.
    -Stan
    my bikes

  20. #20
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    I regularly have lunch with a group that included several WWII veterans. Three of them have died in the last six months; only one WWII vet in the group now can make it to lunch on a regular basis. Although I enjoy hearing the vets' stories not all of them want to talk about the war. Until I read the man's obituary in 2005 or 2006 I did not know that a man in the firm for which I worked as a young lawyer and whose office was close to mine had been at D-Day, the Battle of the Bluge, had been among the first troops to cross the Rhine and had been awarded the Silver Star among other awards. When I remarked to one of his friends after he died that I never knew about his WWII service the friend replied that he never spoke about the war to anyone. He just did not want to talk about it.
    I try to be perfectly civil, until someone really pisses me off.

  21. #21
    Sculpture on 2 wheels
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    Thank you folks,

    Some great stories here thanks to all for sharing. They are almost all gone now but we will remember forever.

  22. #22
    BONC founding member
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    Thanks for the reminder.
    Both my Father and Uncle were flying over the channel that day.
    I think their overall experience during WWII made them both serene and reserved re life in general. Neither spoke openly about the war. What very few stories and details did get shared blew my mind.
    I think about them, that war, more than I ever have.
    It's strange to consider that Civil War vets and atomic bombs
    overlapped each other in history by more than a decade

  23. #23
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    I used to read everything I could get my hands on about WW2 as a teen. I was particularly interested in the submarine and battleship conflicts. It's common to hear people of that era called the greatest generation per Tom Brokaw's quote, and rightly so.
    "I felt bad because I couldn't wheelie; until I met a man with no bicycle"

  24. #24
    Windrider (Stubborn)
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    6 June 1944

    My father went in D-day +6, 15 days after his high school graduation....think about that.

    He was a forward infantry observer (FIO) for the 283rd field artillery battalion. For those who don't know what that is, before GPS, the way artillery was zeroed on to a target was by having FIO's within visual range of the target, firing test shots, radioing back adjustments on the spot until the test shots hit, and then letting loose. It was one of the most dangerous jobs in the war.

    The 283rd held or holds several combat records from WW II,

    - 268 continuous days in combat.
    - 4,241 combat miles
    - fought in every major battle in the war.
    - were attached to every army in the European theatre at one time during the war.
    - moved the entire battalion 300 miles overnight, over a mountain range, in a blizzard and were active at dawn. The longest movement ever by land of an artillery battalion.
    - liberated Dachau & Baden Baden

    My dad missed 8 days of those 268 days because of a shrapnel wound incurred saving his commander while operating within 50 yards of a target. He was decorated with a Purple Heart, 2 bronze stars w oak leaf clusters, and a silver star.

    We never knew the entire story until after he died. I heard the texture of the story from his commander after discovering his silver star after his death.

    I once offered to take him to Europe to tour his path...he looked at me like I had 2 heads....."why would I want to relive that!"

    His best friend told me once that he was never the same after the war.....his laugh was gone, the light was gone.

    Lots of hidden sacrifices and victims from that war.

    It's good we remember.

    Len



    "Evil....is the complete lack of Empathy!"

    ""We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit. " Aristotle

    No one is as bad as the worst thing they have done & no one is as good as the best thing they have done.........think of that when you feel like you understand someone.

  25. #25
    Le Misérable
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10ae1203 View Post
    Thanks for posting this. Not only can't I imagine what it must have been like to get out there that day, I can hardly fathom how the hell they ever coordinated something like that.
    +1 on the planning angle. I read an article recently comparing military leadership from that era and their willingness to take risks to that of the commanders who have overseen more recent overseas military commitments. It was written by journalist who seemed to know his stuff, but this isn't a subject I know anything about so I'm not taking any kind of stance here. To the point of this thread, he really outlined the remarkable audacity and out-of-the-box thinking that helped succeed at Normandy...while suggesting that such leadership is unimaginable in the context of today's military culture.

    Hey, that was easy to find: General Failure - Thomas E. Ricks - The Atlantic.
    C'est dommage que je sois un ignorant, car je vous citerais une foule de choses ; mais je ne sais rien.

    --Hugo

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