On June 6, 1944 Allied soldiers bravely stormed the beaches of Normandy, France. The Normandy beaches were chosen because of the range of air cover and it was shortest distance from Great Britain. 5 landing beaches were chosen for the assault Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword beaches. As dawn broke the largest armada ever assembled began it’s assault on the beach’s of Normandy. By the end of the day the Atlantic Wall, which took the Germans years to build, had fallen and the invasion was a success.
D-Day will be on Monday, June 6, 2016.
What Does D-Day Mean?
There is no general consensus on how D-Day was coined. Many believe it simply means Day. During WWII allied forces used the terms D-Day and H-Hour for the day and hour on which a combat attack or operation was initiated. The letters are derived from the words, “D” for the day of the invasion and “H” for the hour the operation was to begin. However, the French maintain it stood for “disembarkation” while others say “debarkation”. So like many questions in history there is no clear answer.
D-Day by the Numbers
150,000 Allied soldiers land on the shores of Normandy.
5,000 vessels with 30,000 vehicles crossed the English Channel to France.
13,000 men parachuted into France.
11,000 planes were involved
More than 300 planes dropped bombs.
9,000 allied soldiers were dead or wounded after the first day.
The beaches were approximately 200 yards before any natural protection.