D DAY

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Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Topic Author's Original Post - Jun 6, 2014 - 11:27am PT
I've done some scary climbs but don't think I can imagine what it was like for a teenage kid to be in a vomit filled Higgens boat headed for Omaha Beach. They had to perform or die, and saw horrors that nobody should while doing so.

A friend of mine is in Normandy for the ceremonies, and wants to check out the cliffs our boys batmanned up at Point Du Hoc.
Looks like the weather is much nicer on this 70th anniversary.


Hats off to the greatest generation. I would never have had the wonderful life that I have enjoyed were it not for their courage and sacrifice.
How many kids these days even have a clue as too how much blood was spilled for the freedoms that they take for granted.

(ok, end of geezer rant)
Dave Kos

Social climber
Temecula
Jun 6, 2014 - 11:33am PT
Most kids today have played so much Call of Duty that they know the details of every battle in WWII, from the perspective of all sides.

Of course many of them don't comprehend that all of it really happened.



The water chute up the center goes at 5.6
pyro

Big Wall climber
Calabasas
Jun 6, 2014 - 11:37am PT
both my grandpa's did the deed for d day.
my uncle did an even bigger deed by fly'n the b24 and b17 over france at the time..uncle bruno didnt make it thru some akak..

happy doughnut day!
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Jun 6, 2014 - 11:46am PT
Today's LA Times tells the story of a lad who stepped off the LC ramp and went straight to the bottom with 90 pounds of gear on. He managed to wriggle out of his gear and make it to the
beach. That is known as making it out of the frying pan and into the fire. My dad did that at Guadalcanal. That wasn't as hotly contested on the beach but it wasn't exactly beach blanket bingo, either.
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
Nothing creative to say
Jun 6, 2014 - 12:03pm PT
thx Toker for the Du Hoc reference


from Wikipedia...



2 days after





Demo of type of ladders used.
neversummer

climber
30 mins. from suicide USA
Jun 6, 2014 - 12:04pm PT
Credit: neversummer
Seamstress

Trad climber
Yacolt, WA
Jun 6, 2014 - 12:09pm PT
Found myself tearing up on the morning drive in, listening to D Day memories. From the father-in-law who was liberated, to my mom's friend who endured bobings in Nazi Germany and deep shame for her nation when migrated to the US with a GI husband, this war was very real. Changed history. Salute.
guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Jun 6, 2014 - 01:23pm PT
We all owe far more then we can ever repay.

Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jun 6, 2014 - 01:24pm PT
Day of days....when thousands, mostly boys, rose to the occasion when their country, and indeed the world, asked so much of them.....and by their actions, they became men....and those men saved the world from evil.

May we never forget.......

Credit: Cragman

Tami

Social climber
Canada
Jun 6, 2014 - 01:29pm PT
THanks to all who continue to serve...
clinker

Trad climber
Santa Cruz, California
Jun 6, 2014 - 01:35pm PT

Hats off to the greatest generation. I would never have had the wonderful life that I have enjoyed were it not for their courage and sacrifice.
How many kids these days even have a clue as too how much blood was spilled for the freedoms that they take for granted.

(ok, end of geezer rant)

Rant on Toker and may we never forget.
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Topic Author's Reply - Jun 6, 2014 - 02:11pm PT
The bitch about Du Hoc was that the guns had already been moved and replaced with dummy pipes.
Most of the mortar grappling hooks failed because they hadn't prevented the ropes from getting wet in the crossing, and nobody had factored in the heavier weight. Less than half reached the top.

It was totally sketched out, but somehow they topped out and fought off the emplaced and fortified germans.

There were a few skilled german MG42 gunners over on Omaha that accounted for hundreds of casualties each!

What carnage! But we actually did worse to the Iraqies hauling home booty from Kuwait on "the road of death". Fish in a barrel.

Too bad the amphibious tanks flubbed. (Or should I say blub blub)

Who was the officer that said, "Gentlemen, we are being killed on the beach. Let us move inland and be killed there."?
GDavis

Social climber
SOL CAL
Jun 6, 2014 - 02:32pm PT
Rick A

climber
Boulder, Colorado
Jun 6, 2014 - 03:12pm PT
My Dad went across the channel around the end of June 1944, part of the Third Armored Division, 1st Army. He was a second lieutenant in charge of moving wounded tankers from the front to field hospitals via stretcher, jeep, and 3/4 ton truck ambulances.

Hard to imagine the suffering he must have seen.





donini

Trad climber
Ouray, Colorado
Jun 6, 2014 - 03:15pm PT
Heard about the preparations and tried to inlist but, even though I was a big 10 month old, they turned me down.
gunsmoke

Mountain climber
Clackamas, Oregon
Jun 6, 2014 - 03:24pm PT
Hard for those us born after the war was long over to imagine what they faced. Too bad that the Google logo is silent about this day, just as it was for the 60th anniversary a decade ago. By the next decade anniversary there will be almost no survivors left.
guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Jun 6, 2014 - 03:36pm PT
Who was the officer that said, "Gentlemen, we are being killed on the beach. Let us move inland and be killed there."?

Norman Cota .... A leader of men.
Sierra Ledge Rat

Mountain climber
Old and Broken Down in Appalachia
Jun 6, 2014 - 03:39pm PT
Not many people understand what it feels like to be sent on a mission that it surely suicide.

While there is some nervousness, there is also a profound acceptance of your own impending death. You can't understand that unless you've felt it yourself.
mtnyoung

Trad climber
Twain Harte, California
Jun 6, 2014 - 05:12pm PT
On June 4th, 1944, Rome fell to American forces breaking out from Anzio.

On June 15th, 1944 American Marines stormed ashore at Saipan in the Pacific (also called then, as was every amphibious assault of the time "D-Day").

All during June 1944, British and American forces were fighting the Imphal/Kohima battles and striking toward central Burma.

On June 22, 1944, the Red Army launched Operation Bagration (timed to be on the fourth anniversary of the German invasion) which eventually gutted the German Army Group Center.

So much concentrated fighting during that time, and all the then-Western Allies celebrate in a big way now is the invasion of Normandy.

That doesn't seem necessarily inappropriate, but to those of us who study history, it does seem a little odd. I suppose that "D-Day" has come to be the one overriding symbol of that war, and of what one of America's greatest generations did.

Thank goodness we do at least that.
mouse from merced

Trad climber
The finger of fate, my friends, is fickle.
Jun 6, 2014 - 06:10pm PT
Estimates vary, but at this point there may be fewer than 5,000 living people who could tell you what it was actually like to land or parachute into Normandy on D-Day, according to the National World War II Museum in New Orleans.

Which means the rest of us, on the 70th anniversary Friday, have to get our impressions of that bloody, momentous day when 156,000 Allied soldiers landed on the beaches of France from a different theater of war: the movies.

http://www.northjersey.com/arts-and-entertainment/movies/on-d-day-s-70th-the-longest-day-other-movies-provide-a-sense-of-the-moment-1.1029710

In 1960 I read Cornelius Ryan's book, The Longest Day. Two years later I saw the movie, which had The Duke, among others, in the cast. And let's don't forget the TV series, Combat. All three shaped my view of the invasion and the aftermath.

It was very satisfying to see the movie Saving Private Ryan managed a more humane perspective while still making oodles of money. I saw it twice on the big screen. Hats off to Spielberg.

And a salute to the remaining vets of the landings all over the world.

crankster

Trad climber
Jun 6, 2014 - 06:25pm PT
Good read..
http://www.amazon.com/Day-June-Climactic-Battle-World/dp/068480137X
TGT

Social climber
So Cal
Jun 6, 2014 - 06:29pm PT
Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force!

You are about to embark upon the Great Crusade, toward which we have striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere march with you. In company with our brave Allies and brothers-in-arms on other Fronts, you will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.

Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped and battle-hardened. He will fight savagely.

But this is the year 1944! Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of 1940-41. The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeats, in open battle, man-to-man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground. Our Home Fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions of war, and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men. The tide has turned! The free men of the world are marching together to Victory!

I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty and skill in battle. We will accept nothing less than full Victory!

Good Luck! and Let us all beseech the blessing of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking.

~ Dwight D. Eisenhower
John Duffield

Mountain climber
New York
Jun 6, 2014 - 06:31pm PT
I went through Point du Hoc in April. Pretty cool. The ceilings were burned from the thermite grenades. There was a double black flag on a buoy in the water there. Wonder what that was.

The signs said, the guns hadn't been installed yet. They had one though.

Gun at Point du Hoc
Gun at Point du Hoc
Credit: John Duffield
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jun 6, 2014 - 06:37pm PT
Shot this pic of Point du Hoc a few years back.

Credit: Cragman
Gene

climber
Jun 6, 2014 - 06:40pm PT
Ike has a message prepared that he never had deliver.

'Our landings in the Cherbourg-Haver area have failed to gain a satisfactory foothold and I have withdrawn the troops.

'My decision to attack at this time and place was based upon the best information available.

'The troops, the air, and the navy did all that bravery and devotion to duty could do. If any blame or fault attaches to the attempt, it is mine alone.'

I can only imagine what current leaders would do to avoid responsibility in situations of similar or lesser magnitude.

Actually, I don't have to imagine.

g
TGT

Social climber
So Cal
Jun 6, 2014 - 06:47pm PT
30 short years ago.
Bruce Morris

Social climber
Belmont, California
Jun 7, 2014 - 12:47am PT
Who was the officer that said, "Gentlemen, we are being killed on the beach. Let us move inland and be killed there."?

Toker: It was Colonel George Taylor, commander of the Big Red One's lead assault regiment on Omaha Beach, who actually said:

"Only two kinds of people are going to be on this beach, the dead and those who are going to die. Now get moving!"

He uttered those words while marching confidently up and down the beach, while exposing himself to withering incoming fire.

Colonel Taylor's words are used as the title for historian John C. McManus's new book on the Big Red One on Omaha Beach:

http://www.amazon.com/The-Dead-Those-About-Die/dp/0451415299
FRUMY

Trad climber
Bishop,CA
Jun 7, 2014 - 06:21am PT
I believe Guyman is right. It was General Norman Cota.
Cragman

Trad climber
June Lake, California....via the Damascus Road
Jun 7, 2014 - 06:29am PT
^Yep.
guyman

Social climber
Moorpark, CA.
Jun 7, 2014 - 12:02pm PT
TGT.... thanks for posting that speech.

Bruce, looks like a good book. I am sure that many brave leaders used similar words to save their men.

To stand up, walk around and encourage your guys to stand up, calm down and get to work, is the true sign of raw courage.

..... and Mark, you posting from Spain???
Bruce Morris

Social climber
Belmont, California
Jun 7, 2014 - 12:55pm PT
Yep, McManus's new book is getting great reviews. It's already considered the definitive account of the battle on Omaha Beach. McManus is professor of Military History at the Missouri University of Science and Technology and author of The American Combat Soldier In WWII along with another book on Operation Market Garden. Sounds like an excellent marketing ploy too: releasing this title on the 70th anniversary of D-Day will automatically get a bunch of advanced sales. I ordered a copy for myself yesterday.
Reilly

Mountain climber
The Other Monrovia- CA
Jun 7, 2014 - 01:50pm PT
It is very interesting that Rommel was convinced the landing would come at
Pas de Calais. Hitler was sure it would be Normandy but he had such faith
in Rommel that he didn't impose his will as he did in so many other instances.
Rommel also committed some serious tactical errors during the first days of
the invasion when it was still touch and go. He actually thought Normandy
was a feint so he held back major reserves in the Calais area despite overwhelming
intelligence to the contrary. Rommel often went with his gut when intel
said otherwise. This often worked in Africa because of his forces' superior
training and tactics. It didn't work in Normandy.
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