American troops wade ashore on Omaha Beach during the D-Day invasion on June 6, 1944. (Photo: Getty Images/John Parrot/Stocktrek Images)

Thursday marked the 75th anniversary of D-Day, when American, British, and Canadian troops stormed the beaches of Normandy, France, to liberate Europe from Nazi occupation. Approximately 6,600 American troops were killed, wounded, or counted as missing in action in the Normandy invasion.

President Donald Trump participated in a ceremony commemorating D-Day’s 75th anniversary at the Normandy American Cemetery. Speaking to more than 170 U.S. veterans of World War II – including more than 60 of the men who landed on D-Day – he said, “You are among the very greatest Americans who will ever live. You’re the pride of our nation. You are the glory of our republic. And we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.”

Nolan Peterson, a former special operations pilot and combat veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, is The Daily Signal’s foreign correspondent. He reflected on the sacrifice of these men: American Soldiers on D-Day Set the Bar for Courage

Emma Watkins, a research assistant for Heritage’s Center for National Defense, and Alexandra Marotta, a member of Heritage’s Summer 2019 Young Leaders Program, explain why the sacrifices at Normandy must never be forgotten: Read it here on The Daily Signal.

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Comments (21)

Michael Robertson - June 7, 2019

I would recommend every young person – 15-30 years of age, relearn the history of this great country. If it is not taught in their schools, encourage them to read on their own time and discuss their readings with teachers and friends. We cannot let the sacrifices of any generation, who fought so well be forgotten.

Dr. Judith T. Witmer - June 7, 2019

All Americans need to know real history. Specific to WWII, they first need to know why we refer to these men and women as the Greatest Generation. Every war is unique unto itself, and this is the War of the 20th Century, the war for world freedom.
(from a member of the Silent Generation who as a child sang at War Bond Rallies). We remember!

Jim Christison - June 7, 2019

I think the younger generation should be reminded that all the warriors in World War II had such a strong belief in OUR way of life, that they sacrificed, up to and including their physical existence on this earth. There is no dedication higher than that.

Patricia Norris - June 7, 2019

I heard our President’s speech on Mark Levin show. When he told about one private who came back to fight after his injuries and trying to save others, I just broke down crying. I have heard many stories but for some reason this really hit the heart. So many brave men who fought for our freedom..no words to express enough thanks. God Bless them all from the bottom of my heart.

Steven P Taylor - June 7, 2019

That love of country and the love of fellow compatriots can mean more than life.

Dorothy McNaught - June 7, 2019

We need to be sure each generation is taught American and world history. All high school students should be required to have a course in patriotic values and know the pledge of allegiance and the National Anthem. It should include the Constitution, and an accurate history of this great country, including the high cost in lives that were given by our ancestors to preserve our freedom. Why did their family/ancestors come to America? Teach what these words mean, “One nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all”, in our pledge of allegiance. Also teach them to stand with hand over heart when saying the pledge.

William King III - June 7, 2019

I think it would be important for the young to learn how we had faith in God and even in the face of death willing to fight for family and country against all odds. We have many freedoms worth fighting for, and values not worth giving up on.

Gracyn Robinson - June 7, 2019

Outside of schools which in their curriculae, study WWII, there is a massive disconnect with younger generations on what America stands for; that Liberty, Justice and Democracy, do not occur, by chance.

Recently while on a business trip disembarking from a plane at DIA, there along the moving walkways- which traced the entire length of that given terminal – were WWII Veterans, respected elders and true Patriots, who fought and died for our freedom; lined up, seated along the walkway..

They represented every division of our Armed Forces.
It was so incredibly moving there are really no words that capture how I felt that day in witnessing them, banded together, survivors of the greatest service in the theater of war.

To walk past without stopping, and thanking each Veteran, for their sacrifice and heroism to our Nation, was unthinkable and would have been shameful.

When one thinks of the cultural differences in American society between 75 years ago and the present, the disconnect, disintegration, and cultural divide, is massive.

And yet there have been other wars fought, with equal heroes of valor, patriotism, and loss; and the grief, and gratitude, is concurrent with each war- whether abroad or on our own Nation’s soil.

Yet they truly represent The Greatest Generation.
To our country’s youth and boards of education, studies of WWII should be mandatory. Every battle fought for our freedom should be covered in middle school.

One cannot fully respect the present and future prosperity of the United States of America, without knowledge of the toll, courage, valor of wars, notably today WWII, which through their collective hundreds of thousands service and loss of life, gave in return, our Freedom.

God Bless the veterans of WWII, on Earth and in Heaven.

Kenneth H Westlund - June 8, 2019

Here are three things the Greatest Generation was noted for:
1. Be joiners. Join organizations that are in alignment with your values and the traditional values of America!
2. Be participants. Get involved with efforts and organizations that support your values.
3. Commit to support financially. Be willing to contribute to organizations that do the most good.

Eugene Maynard - June 8, 2019

Tenacity. When you have decided a way to proceed and carefully considered it to be correct, then proceed and let not hell or high water keep you from your goal.
That is what our fathers and grandfathers believed and that is not political correctness.

Budimir Zvolanek - June 8, 2019

With God, everything is possible! Imagine 17 years old, 1st time away from home, and you are floating on a boat toward a beach while bullets are streaming from nearby hills occupied by Germans! You know you have a job to do and no choice but to forge ahead to defeat the evil. You pray to the heavenly Father and feel strength despite the scary circumstance. Our youngsters today, unless told such a story, loose Faith in God and thus courage to do what’s needed and right . Such heroism from the past must be instilled throughout the youth of all boys and men lest we all succumb to evil. Amen.

Pierce G Smith - June 8, 2019

Commitment

paul m allen Capt USN Ret - June 8, 2019

I am a veteran of WWll-Korea-Vietnam and fortunately was not in the zone to be killed. I went where they sent me. Many of my contemporaries did not survive. At the age of 93 I am dismayed at the lack of education on our past war history and believe quite strongly that our youth, after high school. should serve for 2 years, full or part time, in federal/state programs connected with the military or peace core efforts.

Dan OBryan - June 8, 2019

Young Americans should know that even though they may never be called to sacrifice everything, heart, mind and body, to defend the American way of life there will always be some of us who are willing to step forward to do the job for them. It has always been a life or death decision for those who have stepped up. It is those people who young Americans should remember and thank, because in every occasion in the past those are the people who have taken action to assure a continuation of America, the American way of life, and a future for those Americans who live to enjoy the benefits and freedoms of the greatest country on earth.

Janet Scaruffi - June 8, 2019

I am grandmother of 12 and great gand of 12 more. I purchased Liz Cheney’s patriotic books on America. If every child would read them they would then have a better view of American history and hopefully be enticed to explore the true American History. School history I loved what I did not was all those dates . Date do not sit as well as facts that I gleaned even as an 85 yr old from Liz’s books. Sadly most people don’t know they exist.

Tom Crouch - June 8, 2019

Duty, Honor, Country!

Chris Milord - June 8, 2019

Although there have been many valiant veterans throughout our history, warriors of the greatest generation helped to beat back fascism and defeat a supremacist Japanese empire and the Third Reich. It is important that this crucial history is taught in the public schools. It is highly important to remember that responsible liberty and the rule of law must be continuously defended from state or non-state actors who would attempt to undermine core democratic principles. Young people should understand that building character demands hard work and sacrifices. In an age of identity politics and narcissism, students need to understand that freedom can’t be taken for granted or it can diminish. We all have a role to play in preserving free enterprise, liberty, and national security by doing what we can to keep America strong as a shining example to the world. It is by giving to larger causes that brings fulfillment and improves our society.

John Crews - June 9, 2019

Nolan said it quite well. The young people of today should learn to be ready and willing to defend our country like the youth of 1940.
For starters, they should be in good physical shape to participate. We need to place a national emphasis on the physical condition of our youth by having vigorous physical education classes from the first grade on. I hear that over 70 % of those volunteering for the arm services are rejected for being over weight. This is a National Emergency ! Please pass this on to President Trump. He will take care of it.

rose rodano - June 9, 2019

OUR young students know very little if
anything about our American History. I had
always thought this;however,my thoughts
were valid.I was at a PT session and asked
the young woman what her feelings were
about D-Day. Never heard of it she replied,
well, if you turn the TV on to listen to the
news you will learn an important time in the

John Glass - June 11, 2019

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The fact that we have de-emphasized patriotism in the classrooms and in our society in general does not bode well for our ability to storm a beach successfully and win a battle against the forces of evil that we have such a hard time defining today. The fantastic founding minds and dedication, the love of freedom, and the willingness to sacrifice that created the America we live in …. do they still exist ? The Heritage Foundation purpose is critical to our ability to create a base to build on if America is to survive …. I pray we are not to late..

J. L. Schmerbauch - June 11, 2019

The National Geographic Channel covered many aspects of WWII and what followed. The atrocities should not be ignored. We see them repeated still, world wide. How do we stop hatred? The lust for power over others?

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