In ceremonies at Omaha Beach and Sword Beach in Normandy, U.S. Rep. Susan A. Davis will pay tribute to World War II veterans, including her father who served in the European theater, on the 70th anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy.
“I take personal pride and feel a lot of emotion for the fact that my dad was a medic in Europe during the war, and saw a lot in that theater,” said Davis, a senior member of the House Armed Services Committee. “Some of the men who stormed the beach 70 years ago were from San Diego, so my ability to represent San Diego in honor of those who died, as well as those still with us to today makes this trip especially meaningful. Having watched recently released footage of the Normandy invasion, I am reminded of the acts of courage, planning, coordination, engineering feats, and a commitment to stopping the spread of tyranny.”
Davis’s father, Captain George Alpert, served as an Army medic in the European theater. Davis will be part of a bipartisan delegation from Congress that will attend memorial ceremonies across the beaches of Normandy.
On the morning of Friday, June 6, a ceremony honoring American veterans will be held at Normandy American Cemetery at Omaha Beach hosted by President Barack Obama and French President François Hollande. More than 93,000 American war dead from WW II are interred at Normandy American Cemetery.
Attending the Omaha Beach ceremony will be 81 American WW II veterans, including five from the San Diego area. Davis will be looking for these veterans and hopes to meet with them at the memorial ceremony.
An international ceremony will take place Friday afternoon at Sword Beach that will include President Obama and Allied heads of state. President Hollande will make remarks.
The largest seaborne invasion in history began at 6:30 a.m. on June 6, 1944 when 155,000 troops hit the beaches of Normandy. The five beaches where the Allies landed were code named Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno, and Sword. By the night of June 6, 1944, more than 9,000 Allied soldiers were dead or wounded.