Freedom and Liberty

Freedom and Liberty
I travel in Freedom but sleep in the security of Liberty (not only on the road, but in this amazing country of ours)

Saturday, May 10, 2014

D-Day Memorial

Since there weren't any pictures in the last post, there will be lots in this one. The morning started by driving about 40 miles to Bedford, VA. That is the home of the National D-Day Memorial as established by the Congress and dedicated by President George W. Bush in 2001. The population of Bedford is around 6,000. Why put such an important memorial in such a small town? Because proportionally, the Bedford community lost the most servicemen on D-Day than any other community in the country. I arrived about 30 minutes after it opened and was one of only about 10 other visitors. I like it like that, especially at a place that I expect to be solemn and somber with a lot of introspection. I was very surprised by the first
statue on the pathway leading to the site. It was located in the middle of the sidewalk so there was no chance of missing it. It was of a ghoulish figure that would probably scare children. Even after reading the plaque, I'm still puzzled why the figure is so ghoulish and in such a prominent location.

This year is the 70th anniversary of D-Day, which was the beginning of the end for Nazi Germany and Hitler. They had

controlled Europe, North Africa and the Baltics for almost 4 years. On June 6, 1944, the Allies began the liberation of Europe by sending 5,000 ships, 11,000 airplanes and 150,000 men

across the English Chanel to Normandy, France. It is the largest air, land and sea operation ever. Twelve

countries participated in the event. Hopefully, there will never be a need for another one.

The next picture is looking back toward the entrance from

the display. You are looking through the landing craft (Higgins Boat) which were designed and built in Louisiana. The depiction is of the landing itself, with the water in front and soldiers climbing the hills.

As you step backwards, the bluish colored concrete pavement represents the water as you approach the beach. To the right side of the picture is the section devoted to the Navy and to the left is the Air Force. Of course the center section is the Army. Behind me, in the picture above, is a statue of Ike surrounded by busts of his Generals.

My favorite General only has a plague and not a bust. He seems to have been marginalized even at a memorial in which he would have had more appreciation of its significance than some of the others represented by busts. 

Looking towards the memorial from Ike's point of view you can see the overall display. Notice how everything lines up on a straight line through the center.

The last picture is of the dedication engraved in the stone close to the entrance.

It is a very good memorial and I enjoyed wandering around it for a couple hours. It is a place where you can walk for a while, then sit and absorb it. It represents a significant event in not only our history as Americans but of the world.

Ya'll take care of each other. Cya.

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