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mala_D

D - Day Remembered

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I hope that no one on this forum is "bored" with the 60th Anniversary Commemoration. Just a few lines......

 

I was lucky enough to spend some time with some members of the Normandy Veterans Association during the 49th Anniversary in 1993 and I can honestly say that I am proud to have assisted and to have associated with them. Great fellas, healthy drinkers the ones I was with, such strong characters.

 

I was also incredibly lucky to have shook the hand of Major John Howard, the chap who led 6th Airborne's raid on Pegasus Bridge - although the circumstance in which I met him was comical.

 

Another well-known character I met was Lord Lovat's Piper, Bill Millan - Lovat Being the Commanding Officer of the Commando unit which raced through Oustreham and linked up with 6th Airborne holding Pegasus Bridge.

One fella I was with called him a "nutty ba5tard" and another replied "he had to be, to play the pipes while everyone else was busy ducking bullets!" Brilliant!

 

Everywhere I went with them, the veterans were given drinks on the house and had so many French people come up to them and shake their hands. I even had a Dutch fella who grabbed me by the hand and said: "I want to thank you for your fathers, your grandfathers, your uncles, for saving my country". Made me feel very proud to be English/British.

 

The irony is I had an uncle who died as a British soldier in North Africa in 1941, and a Ukranian uncle who fought in the German Rhine Army from late 1944.

 

I could add loads more about my experience of being with the Veterans....but would just like to say...

 

If you haven't already done so, please spare a thought for those who fought for Britain in WWII - before D-Day and after.

 

The post-war world might be an imperfect place, but the alternative History thankfully didn't happen to us because of them.

Like it says: They gave their Tomorrow for our Today.

 

Remember the Greatest Generation of Men and Women this country has produced.

 

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Well put Mala.

 

I watched most of yesterdays coverage with awe and pride.

 

I lost an uncle, (who I never met), who went right through the war, including receiving Africa Star AND bar. (2 x tours).

 

He went over a few days after D-Day and was killed during the big push forward supporting our infantry. I have managed to get all the details of his death and his place of burial from The War Graves Commission, who were fantastic.

 

They said on yesterdays programme, that my generation, (born 1947 ish), is the generation that tends to remember the least, as many were the product of the conflict.

 

Oddly enough, our eldest daughter is off to Normandy and Brittany next week with a school trip and part of the tour is a visit to a British War Grave. I am so pleased our childrens children are still being taught the values of freedom. Zara, (our Grand-Daughter), asked me for details of where Tom is buried, just on the off chance that might be the place they visit, though I fancy it may be a little too far in land from where they will be. Her final words on the subject, were.

 

[color:"blue"] "Don't worry Grand-Dad - If we DO go to where Tom is, I promise I'll get you a photo of his grave !" [color:"black"]

 

Bought a big lump to my throat, and she's JUST 13 !

 

Right Lads ! Sensible head off now. Back to Drivel !!

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Yep.

 

The War Graves Commission will give exact details on every grave number, if you know the person's name. You can get it from their website.

 

My Uncle John, (who I obviously never met) is buried in the war cemetery at Calais North, having been killed in the Battle of Britain.

 

Whenever on a trip over there, I (and any Invisible Offspring present) always visit Uncle John. I'm taking Invisible Mum over later this year to see him (he was actually Invisible Dad's brother).

 

One of the most poignant things is that he is one of the oldest ones there.

 

He was 25.

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My Father was in the Home Guard owing to age. I am as proud of him as if he was in the D-Day assault....I am thankfull for all the people who were there, and especially of those who died there!

Whether the Chavs or any other knockers realise it......they would not have the freedom to be what they are! Hitler would never have allowed their type to exist!

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At last ! A thread that has remained sensible.

 

One point I was going to mention in my last post !

 

Those of you who watched the parade and fly-past on Sunday would have pleased to see, like me, a sight which would have been un-heard of a few years ago. The leaders of all the major super-powers sitting and chatting on friendly terms, especially Mr & Mrs Puttin and Mr & Mrs Bush who were sitting next to one another !

 

If this doesn't tell those anonymous ragheads who wish to rid the world of the western infidels that they are on a hiding to nothing, then they are thicker than I already take 'em for !

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Amazing yet Tragic stories, glad to see good coverage and was pleased to see the efforts from the French to show there appreciation and gratitude to the brave souls.

 

I don't think that the generations from both World Wars will ever be replicated in society nowadays, but this ain't a time to rant.

 

Great honour to descend from those generations and they'll never be forgotten in my heart.

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A good friend of mine, himself an ex-para, comes from a military family, and his dad was welcomed into a certain Belgian town as liberator, as he was leading a small troop of armoured cars. They were the first Allied troops into that town, far beyond the lines inside enemy territory.

 

In fact he was lost, and shouildn't have been anywhere near there.

 

I like things like that.

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Was down on the Isle of Wight at the weekend, had an excellent D-Day air display and memorial service at Sandown Airport. Had a Lancaster bomber, a B-17, Hurricanes, Mustangs and half a dozen Spitfires. Made the hair on the back of your neck stand on end as they roared over head. Thousands there, strange atmosphere, not the usual excitement of air shows, much more respectful.

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