Seventy years ago today....
On June 6, 1944, more than 160,000 Allied troops landed along a 50-mile stretch of heavily-fortified French coastline, to fight Nazi Germany on the beaches of Normandy, France. Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower called the operation a crusade in which, “we will accept nothing less than full victory.” More than 5,000 Ships and 13,000 aircraft supported the D-Day invasion, and by day’s end, the Allies gained a foot-hold in Continental Europe. The cost in lives on D-Day was high. More than 9,000 Allied Soldiers were killed or wounded, but their sacrifice allowed more than 100,000 Soldiers to begin the slow, hard slog across Europe, to defeat Adolph Hitler’s crack troops.
But to hear Jim "Pee Wee" Martin tell it, he doesn't feel like he did anything exceptional. Martin - now 93 years old - parachuted into Normandy to mark the 70th Anniversary of that terrible day.
Martin wasn't the only one to make the jump.
Scottish D-Day veteran, Jock Hutton, also did it. He's 89.
CNN provides this look at the numbers: