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As other waves of troops came ashore, they had to step over the bodies of dead soldiers floating in the surf. Eventually, more than 3.

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The D-Day successes did not end the war — far from it. But D-Day gave the Allies a clear upper hand against the Nazis. Within three months, Paris was liberated. Less than a year later, Germany surrendered. Why D-Day continues to hold such an esteemed place in U.

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Had the Allied landings failed, historians say, the Nazis would have likely strengthened their hold on Europe, lengthening the war for at least another two years. It was one of the few — and perhaps last — times that our country was on the moral high ground, and D-Day was the epitome of stamping out evil for the good of all humanity. But it takes being there on the ground to understand what the soldiers were confronted with. The bus stopped on the edge of the flat beach, nearly yards wide — the same open terrain that confronted U.

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In moments like this, Leblic said, she often thinks back to her father, Arthur, a French soldier who had been taken prisoner by the Nazis in and was forced to work in a German factory that had been confiscated from its Jewish owners. In , Arthur Leblic was freed by the same Allied forces who landed at Normandy.

Now 69, Anne-Marie Leblic routinely makes the two-hour trek to the beaches from her home near Rouen, France. She sees herself as far more than just an ordinary tour guide, but as a keeper of her father's memory. Besides walking on the beach, Leblic's tour group visited the American cemetery atop the Omaha Beach bluffs, where row after row of crosses and Stars of David mark the final resting places of nearly 10, U.

Roosevelt, suffered a fatal heart attack a month after the D-Day landings while fighting elsewhere in Normandy. As Leblic's group entered the cemetery, it paused by the foot bronze statue of a U.

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It was early afternoon, and the cemetery's bells began to play the national anthem. Slowly, their voices rising with each stanza, the group began to sing. At the last minute, however, Passarella was ordered to board a ship for the trip to Normandy. He says the Army told him it did not have enough planes to tow all the gliders. After the war, Passarella rarely spoke about his experiences.

But a decade ago, when his granddaughter, Sarah, said she was writing a report on World War II, he opened up. Like many veterans, Passarella tried to move on with life after he returned to America.

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As he fought his way across Utah Beach and then into the hedgerows and farms of Normandy, he said, he was haunted by a question: "How long is it going to be before I'm laid down? A German bomb exploded. Pieces of shrapnel shredded Passarella's back, and he was evacuated to Great Britain, where he battled infections for months before finally returning to America. Passarella never spoke to his family about his wounds until decades later when he told his granddaughter, Sarah.

And in , at the urging of his congressman, Rep. General Dwight D.

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  • Saturday morning dawned bright and beautiful and the day could not have been better The soldiers raised the flag on the west side of South Washington street in front of Webster House , then crossed the street to raise the flag by Heritage Hall. Visitors were encouraged to ask questions about a soldier's life during the Civil War and children were invited to participate in a scavenger hunt for items that were used during the time.

    Re-enactors would sign off when the kids found the items they were searching for and a completed paper would be rewarded with a prize. Terry Dyer set up a display in Heritage Hall of the Civil War memorabilia he has collected over the years. The ladies encampment set up a quilt stand and encouraged visitors to try their hand at quilting.

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    Re-enactor, Brian Staples, gave a demonstration of musket firing. At the end of the day, the soldiers lowered the flags. Click through the pictures before scrolling down to see day 2. Sunday morning started with breakfast served by members of Tent After breakfast, there was an old fashioned worship service at which the chaplain, Don Shawhan, officiated.