We Don’t Profit on the Backs of the Dead

My guide from the Mémorial de Caen Museum, Rosine Champion, leaned against a low seawall and held up photos of the giant rolls of barbed wire and semi-submerged iron hedgehogs that Germans installed on Omaha Beach during World War II to thwart potential invasions. Shivering in the blustery November winds, I pulled my army-green sweatshirt up around my ears and gazed over the historic strip of sand. Children played tag with the undulating tide and couples strolled hand-in hand. In the distance, a few tourists clustered around “Les Braves,” a remarkable sculpture by artist Anilore Ban that sweeps its balletic stainless steel wings skyward in commemoration of the more than 4,000 Allied troops who lost their lives on that fateful day in 1944.

“It’s hard to believe that this was a site of such carnage,” I remarked.

Champion pointed to an unassuming cottage on the opposite side of the road, tucked between sand dunes crowned with dense vegetation. “That’s the only house on Omaha Beach that survived the Normandy invasion,” she explained.” Gradually, families rebuilt and these days Omaha Beach is a very popular vacation spot with the French.”

How Will We Remember The Gray Eagles Of World War II?

Because I am fascinated by anything having to do with World War II, I was delighted when a friend sent me a link to the video below. It is all about P-51 Mustang fighter planes, affectionately known as the “Gray Eagles.” The story of this enduring aircraft is told through the eyes of pilot Jim … Read more

The WWII Great Escape Through Tunnel Harry

In the middle of the night on March 24, 1944, 76 Allied airmen crawled on their bellies through a 300-foot long tunnel to escape from the Nazi POW Camp, Stalag Luft III (see photo below). They did it by constructing three tunnels the airmen named “Tom,” “Dick,” and “Harry,” using only tools that they could … Read more

War Is Hell

A friend from my previous life in real estate, Bill Holt, sent me an email the other day that contained a series of old black & white photos. Apparently, these photos were discovered on the film from a Brownie camera found stored in an old footlocker belonging to a sailor who was serving on the … Read more