June 6, 2017 - Shelby County Memorial Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 8904 and the Auxiliary gathered at the Veterans Memorial on the grounds of the Historic Courthouse in Center to commemorate the 73rd Anniversary of the D-Day landing in Normandy, France on June 6th, 1944. The program began with a prayer from Post Chaplain Cynthia Islas followed by the Pledge of Allegiance by all in attendance.
Post Quartermaster Larry Hume welcomed and thanked all for attending. He stated the invasion was code named Operation Neptune and D-Day was the turning point in World War II. June 6, 1944 saw the start of the largest air and sea operation in military history. On D-Day, the allies landed around 156,000 troops, of which 73,000 were Americans. The amount of equipment used was staggering. In the airborne landings on both flanks of the Normandy beaches, 2,395 aircraft and 867 gliders of the RAF and USAAF were used on D-Day.
It involved huge naval forces, including 6,939 vessels: 1,213 naval combat ships, 4,126 landing ships and landing craft, 736 ancillary craft and 864 merchant vessels. Some 195,700 personnel were assigned to Operation Neptune; 52,889 US, 112,824 British, and 4,988 from other allied countries. By the end of the 11th of June, 326,547 troops, 54,186 vehicles and 104,428 tons of supplies had been landed on the beaches. Loss of US Forces is estimated at 6,603.
Post Chaplain Cynthia Islas had the honor of placing the D-Day Memorial Wreath on the Veterans Memorial. The program was closed out with the playing of Taps by Post Service Officer John Piersol on the Post Ceremonial Bugle.