Sunday, June 6, 2010

June 6, 1944

Imagine Dangerous' disappointment as he clicked his favorite newspaper links this morning and found nothing about the Normandy Invasion. Maybe 66 years has dulled our memories, but you would expect that the Salt Lake Tribune, New York Times, or Washington Post would mention on their front pages one of the most significant events in world history, but not this June 6. However, June 6 has imprinted a sense of history on Dangerous' life that has lasted his entire 64 years.

D-Day Survivor

Well, my blog doesn't get the exposure that state and national newspapers receive, but I guess it will have to do this year. I thought it appropriate to honor the men who landed and died on the Normandy beaches on June 6, 1944. Dangerous' father Tom was one of those men.

Headed to Shore

Dangerous tells me that his father, now dead 15 years, landed on Utah Beach with the 4th Infantry Division. Tom was a combat medic assigned to an infantry platoon. After the June 6 landing, he served with the 4th Infantry, known as the Ivy Division, through the Battle of the Bulge. A well circulated picture documents his role after the initial invasion.

Hurtgen Forest, Winter 1944

Awarded the Bronze Star for valor, Tom is the center medic giving aid to a wounded soldier. A copy of the picture sent to Tom's wife by Stars and Stripes, the Army's war time newspaper, hangs on Dangerous' office wall. From the picture, you can't see Tom's face, but the bloody hands confirm his identity. The hands are unmistakable, and you can see an identical set on his son today.

After 66 years, you expect the memory of June 6 to fade a bit, but I am sure Dangerous will keep it alive as long as he is around. I hope you take a minute today to remember the sacrifice of so many brave men and their families not that long ago. Love to hear from you!


Bluester said...

Hooray, Swell little piece and hats off to your Father, Tom, and all of those of his generation who served and gave. Best from the Fremont

Max said...

I can only echo Bob's sentiment regarding your dad and others like him. No generation should ever forget the sacrifices that those who have come before it have made. It is our history and legacy and too few of us come to appreciate that fact soon enough in our lives.