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Artifact Friday: Omaha Beach picture

Hello all!

We have been swamped with our summer camp this week! So this Artifact Friday will be shorter.

Yesterday was the 80th anniversary of Operation Overlord, the largest amphibious invasion in American history.

It was the day that finally began the crumbling of Nazi power in Europe.

400,000 Allied troops were deployed to participate in Operation Overlord in some capacity.

59,000 of these were American soldiers who would land on Omaha Beach and Utah Beach.

The Normandy beachhead (where the landings took place) was divided amongst the Allied nations into specific sections- Juno, Gold, Sword, Omaha, and Utah.

Each nation would land on its specific section. American forces were assigned to Omaha and Utah.

Omaha Beach became known as "Bloody Omaha" because of the high mortality rate of soldiers that landed.

A local Arkansan, William Duncan, was a Coast Guardsman assigned to drive a cutter in the waters of Omaha Beach.

His job was to rescue wounded men who were stranded in the water.

He saw many sights that day which he would never forget, including the Rangers scaling Pointe du Hoc.

Duncan also happened to be an avid photographer, and he took pictures of everything when he was stationed in Europe.

One of his pictures was of Omaha Beach where he was during the D-Day landings.

He took this picture when he was able to get on shore during a short break from crewing his boat.

This photograph depicts the huge Coast Guard and Navy armada that was used in the invasion of Normandy.

I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty, and skill in battle. We will accept nothing less than full Victory!

Good luck! And let us beseech the blessing of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking.-General Dwight D. Eisenhower

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