June 6th, 1944
I remember going to see Saving Private Ryan on the day that it came out in small town Iowa. I remember watching in total awe at the scenes of the invasion. I was distracted three times by old men who got up out of their seats and made their way to the lobby... their wives belatedly following them. Normandy veterans. Sometimes you just can't put enough time between you and the past.
I remember in the days afterward hearing a veteran on 1040 WHO radio who had scaled the cliffs at Pointe du Hoc. He explained that the movie had done him a great service in that he had gone with his sons and grandsons. He said that the best part about it was that after all those years he could finally talk about it. It wasn't that he had been afraid all those years, you see, but because he didn't have the words to describe what it was like that day. Sharing the movie allowed his children another level of understanding.
I throw up prayers for those that suffered for Europe. If you have never been to the coast of France, let me assure you that the sacrifice of America is not forgotten. So, for those French who will celebrate wildly and remember solemnly today, I say Vive la France and God Bless America!