In this time of COVID-19 we are used to seeing numbers of the dead published...300, 500 even 800. But on this day 76 years ago 4,500 young men from the allied forces and an equal or greater number of opponents died in one place - the beaches of Normandy.
The majority were American, killed on the disastrous Omaha beach landings, but the British landings on Sword and Gold beaches didn't fare much better with almost 2,000 killed. Several hundred Canadians also died on Juno beach. In case we should think the casualties were one-sided, the German losses are estimated between 4,000-9,000, the huge range itself a testament to the chaos on their side.
Things didn't improve much in the days to come, although the casualty figures now show how hard a battle it was (said from the safety of hindsight) More than 425,000 Allied and German troops were killed, wounded or went missing during the Battle of Normandy. Of these, 209,000 were on the Allied side, whilst a slightly higher number were estimated on the German side.... with a further 200,000 captured. The numbers are staggering.
Between 15,000 and 20,000 French civilians were also killed, mainly as a result of Allied bombing, whilst thousands more fled their homes to escape the fighting.
Twenty-seven war cemeteries in Normandy hold the remains of over 110,000 dead from both sides: 77,866 German, 9,386 American, 17,769 British, 5,002 Canadian and 650 Poles.
Spare a few moments to remember all those who died.
Last edited by macliam
on Sat Jun 06, 2020 8:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Just because I'm paranoid, it doesn't mean they're not out to get me