Though born more than thirty after the end of the Second World War, the global conflagration suffused my childhood. My father served in the War and carried the scars throughout his life. He was one of the lucky ones. As a consequence, every year I take a moment to remember those who put their lives on the line to secure the freedoms I have enjoyed all my life.
#onthisday (6 June) 1944, Operation Neptune began. What is popularly known as D-Day, was both the largest seaborne invasion in history and has come to symbolise the beginning of the end for the Nazi domination of Europe.
One of the most memorable photographs to capture this event was taken by Chief Photographer’s Mate (CPHoM) Robert F. Sargent and aptly titled ‘Into the Jaws of Death.’
It was taken on 6 June 1944 at 08:30 and depicts a LCVP (Landing Craft, Vehicle, Personnel) from the U.S. Coast Guard-manned USS Samuel Chase disembarking troops of Company E, 16th Infantry, 1st Infantry Division (the Big Red One).
The soldiers pictured are wading onto the ‘Fox Green’ section of Omaha Beach (Calvados, Basse-Normandie, France). During the landing, the American soldiers encountered the newly formed German 352nd Division. Two-thirds of Company E became casualties. #lestweforget