June 6, 1944: Allied troops invade on D-Day

Seventy years ago today, Allied troops charged onto the beaches of Normandy, France, in an historic assault that came to be known as D-Day. It marked the beginning of the Battle of Normandy, which lasted from June to August of 1944 and eventually ended with the Allied liberation of Europe.

“You are about to embark upon the Great Crusade, toward which we have striven these many months,” General Dwight D. Eisenhower told his troops. “The eyes of the world are upon you.”

American, British and Canadian troops stormed a total of five beaches. The one that posed the biggest struggle — and perhaps the one most people associate with D-Day — was Omaha beach, where 2,000 Allied troops lost their lives and many more were wounded.

Some of the only photos from the Omaha beach landing were taken by war photographer Robert Capa, who was working for LIFE magazine at the time. The darkroom technician handling Capa’s film worked in haste and accidentally ruined all but 11 of the photos. You can read about Capa’s assignment and see the photos here.

The front page of The Herald on June 6, 1944, is mostly war coverage. A local story told of the D-Day services planned by Everett churches:

“The majority of the residents of the city went to bed last evening with the knowledge that the German radio had said that the invasion had started. There was no official confirmation from allied headquarters in England. Those who remained up naturally were thrilled at the historic news.

Dean Thomas E. Jessett, rector of Trinity Episcopal church, was awakened by one of his parishoners (sic) shortly after 1 a.m. and requested to toll the church bell. Trinity has no bell.

This morning those walking to work and those riding to their places of employment were for the most part somber, revealing full recognition of the enormity of the task ahead of General Eisenhower’s combined armies in France. The solemnity of recognition will continue throughout the day. Everett’s churches will be open at 8 o’clock tonight for special prayers for the fighting forces of the allied nations now invading Europe and for those forces fighting the valiant fight in other theaters around the world.”

More in Local News

District takes steps to secure school campuses

Safety measures have been enhanced at Hawthorne and Silver Firs elementary schools in Everett.

Hard work is paying off for Mariner High senior

Mey Ly has excelled in school since moving here from Cambodia; she also serves as an intrepreter.

County under flood watch; back-to-back storms promise heavy rain

The National Weather Service issued a flood watch Monday for… Continue reading

1 arrested after SWAT team moves in on Marysville house

The incident was connected to an earlier robbery.

Yes to turn signal — eventually

Adding a right-turn signal at 112th St. and 7th Ave. is turning out to be a bit more complicated.

No easy exit from Smokey Point shopping complex

There’s just no easy exit on this one. A reader called in… Continue reading

Front Porch

EVENTS Gingerbread house construction Gingerbread house workshops for families will be held… Continue reading

Snohomish County Council plugs away on budget

Members plan to take up the work again at 7 p.m.

Most Read