One small reprieve. It was now or never.
This morning, the news you had been both waiting anxiously for, yet, at the same time, dreading, was announced.
The commander had given the order.
D-Day was to be today.
A look at the men and the ships around you was enough to strike fear in the heart of anyone. The largest armada ever assembled, 6,939 ships, had gathered together for a surprise attack against the German forces on the beaches of Normandy, France. A pride and a willingness to fight for your country swells in you, but at the same time, fear grips you. What was secure and sure this morning is about to be shattered. Who knows if you will make it through the day? This may be the last time you write home, the last time you look at the picture of your family, or clasp hands with your best friend. Today, all the training you went through will seem to have been just games.
This morning everyone was together. Safe. Alive. But by the time June the 7th dawns upon the land, 4,300 souls from the allied powers woulds would be taken from this world and ushered into eternity.
These would be men you had trained with, men you had talked and joked with, men who had had the same longing for home that you did.
These men you would never see again. Never again would they return to the land that they loved. The girlfriends, mothers, fathers and families left behind would forever pay the price for what these men did on those early morning hours on the beaches of France.
That young soldier who hardly looked old enough to shave, the one who had dreamed of being a journalist, would never return to his paper.
The one you had noticed in the mess hall who sat alone with a letter would never again see the face if his finance smiling up at him.
And the one you had shared a bunk with would never go home to the fly the planes he had spoken about with such anticipation in his eyes. Today those eyes would be forever closed, only to be opened on the other side of eternity.
This is the sacrifice that has been paid for freedom.
Seventy-two years ago today, the allied forces attacked the German army in France. Less than a month later, over one million allied troops were marching through France on their way to Germany.
And there were so many that would never return home.
I pray we will never forget the sacrifice that was made by these brave men so that we might be free.
D-Day 1944—D-Day 2016
A sacrifice never forgotten.