D-Day 67 years later – we must remember.

June 6, 2011

On this the 67th anniversary of D-Day we must remember the sacrifice the servicemen of the Allied Powers (Canada, Britain, the United States, France and Poland) made on the beaches of Normandy, France that fateful June day in 1944.

When you look at the photos of aged veterans commemorating that event, realize that on June 6, 1944 these were mere boys and young men who dashed from the landing craft across the beaches under murderous fire from the entrenched German positions. A terrible number of these young men died there on that beach in the battle against tyranny.

The Second World War had been raging for four long years to this point. The invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944 resulted in the defeat of Nazi Germany and the end of the war in Europe less than one year later. It was the turning point of the war in Europe. If the invasion had failed the war would have dragged on for many more years.

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D-Day: Turning point of WW II

June 7, 2010

A vet remembers. Photo- Matt Cardy-Getty Images

66 years later a vet visits the graves of his buddies in Normandy. The fact these veterans still fondly remember their friends so vividly all these years later illustrates the bond they had for each other.

They did not die in vain. Hitler and the Nazis were defeated. Germany is now democratic, and the world is a better place for it. These vets did what had to be done. They faced fear, manned up, and did the job. I thank them and remember them.


Crosswords – My Wonderful Addiction

September 6, 2007

crosswordstamp1.jpg

Time for me to lighten up a little and talk about some fun things.

The crossword puzzle – I just can’t stop doing them.  Everyday they are published in newspapers and even on-line now.  Temptation is everywhere it seems.

I started thinking who invented the crossword puzzle so after some quick research here are some facts:

– The first crossword was published on December 21, 1913 in the New York World newspaper. They became a regular feature of the paper.

– Arthur Wynne, a Liverpool journalist, was the inventor.

– At first it was called a “word-cross” puzzle. Later the name was changed.

– The first book of crosswords was published in 1924 by Simon & Shuster. 

– Crosswords became the craze of 1924.

– The word “crossword” was first in a dictionary in 1930.

– New York Times crosswords are the most prestigious and known to be the most difficult to solve.  Take it from me they are very tough.

– In Britain the Sunday Express newspaper was first to publish a crossword November 2, 1924.

– During World War II British Intelligence recruited several crossword experts to work on code-breaking.

In 1944, prior to D-Day, the Allies were stunned by the appearance of crosswords in The Daily Express Telegraph that were using top secret code names related to the “hush-hush” planned Normandy landings. “Overlord” in particular was of great concern because it was the code name for the entire operation and known to only a few people.  The author of the puzzles was arrested and interrogated.  After an extensive investigation it was found that the use of these words was only coincidence.  Believe it or not I guess!

I remember as a child in elementary school racing to get the morning paper before my Dad so I could attack the crossword.  It is one of my favorite memories of him.  He too was a compulsive crossworder.


D-Day 63rd Anniversary – Turning Point

June 6, 2007

I just have to post on this topic. World War II history is one of my passions. I am totally fascinated by all of it.

June 6, 1944 the so-called “Longest Day” was the Allied invasion of Nazi controlled Europe. If the war in Europe was ever to be won, Nazi Germany had to be invaded. D-Day was that invasion. British, Canadian, American and other Allied Forces landed on the coast of Normandy in France. The goal was to establish a beachhead and drive into the heart of Germany to end the war. It succeeded.

The war in Europe started in September 1939 and dragged on until May 8, 1945. For 3 years from 1939 until 1944, the Allies hadn’t really made a lot of progress towards attacking Germany directly. They had managed to defeat the German Luffwaffe and ensure air superiority for D-Day. Additionally, they had managed to built Britain into a fortress stocked with arms and troops in preparation for the day when Europe would be invaded. After D-Day, in fact less than one year later, Nazi Germany had been defeated and the European War ended. That was how important the invasion was!

If it had failed it might have been many more years before the Allies were able to try again. That is why D-Day is sometimes referred to as the “Turning Point” of the Second World War, at least in Europe.

War in the Pacific, well that is another story, it did not end until August 1945.


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