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Commemorating Memorial Day and D-Day

Memorial Day and the 80th Anniversary of D-Day - Two Solemn Commemorations

by Don Drake, Connelly Law Offices, Ltd. 5.27.24


Probate Rhode Island
Attorney RJ Connelly III

"Today is Memorial Day, one of the most solemn American observances," said professional fiduciary and certified elder law Attorney RJ Connelly III. "Observed on the last Monday in May, the nation unites to commemorate and pay tribute to the men and women who have perished in service to our country. Initially recognized as Decoration Day, this federal holiday was formally established in 1868 through the 'Memorial Day Order' issued by the Grand Army of the Republic Commander-in-Chief John A. Logan."


The practice of adorning the graves of fallen soldiers with flowers has ancient origins and was widespread in both the North and South following the Civil War. On May 5, 1868, General Order No. 11, also referred to as the "Memorial Day Act," was promulgated, formalizing the observance of Decoration Day as a time to recollect and honor the war dead.


Memorial Day evolved to honor the fallen from all American conflicts as time progressed. In 1966, a congressional resolution officially acknowledged Waterloo, NY, as the "birthplace" of Memorial Day. This led to the Uniform Monday Holiday Act in 1968, which earmarked Memorial Day as a national holiday to be commemorated on the last Monday in May.


The National Moment of Remembrance Act was established in December 2000 to ensure that the sacrifices of America's fallen heroes are never disregarded. This act urges citizens to engage in Memorial Day activities and observe a National Moment of Remembrance at 3 p.m. local time every Memorial Day, dedicating a minute of silence to those who have died in service to the nation.


June 6, 2024 - 80th Anniversary of D-Day

"On the early hours of June 6, 1944, a remarkable and massive military operation unfolded as American and British paratroopers descended into Normandy under the cover of darkness," said Attorney Connelly. "One of the most asked questions is why was this called D-Day? Quite simply, the D stands for 'day,' the specific designation used to indicate the start date of any American military operation. While all American operations had a D-Day, this particular invasion of Normandy is most renowned as D-Day and is etched in history as such."


Probate Massachusetts
The D-Day invasion

During the operation, more than 1,200 aircraft were involved in this massive airborne assault, with additional paratroopers arriving in gliders as daylight broke. The American 82nd and 101st airborne divisions displayed incredible courage as they sought to achieve their inland objectives, seizing key positions and capturing the town of Sainte-Mere Eglise.


At 5:30 AM, the largest naval bombardment in history commenced, lasting a mere forty minutes. American battleships, supported by cruisers, destroyers, and the British Royal Navy, unleashed a relentless barrage on German defenses, gun emplacements, and coastal fortifications.


As the sun rose on that fateful day, wave after wave of landing vessels carried over 150,000 American, British, Canadian, and French troops to the shores of Northern France. The soldiers stormed fiercely defended beaches, facing strong German resistance.


The German defenses at Omaha Beach were formidable, situated on elevated terrain, and heavily fortified. The American landing there proved to be the bloodiest and most challenging of the day. In all, it is estimated that 2,502 Americans and 1,913 Allies from seven nations died in the operation.


Probate Martha's Vineyard
Cemetary in Normady

Meanwhile, the British secured Gold Beach with the help of artillery, tanks, and air support. With lighter resistance than expected, Canadian forces swiftly pushed the Germans out from Juno Beach and established a secure beachhead by mid-afternoon. The British, tasked with securing Sword Beach, advanced three miles from their intended objective at Caen by nightfall.


By the end of D-Day, Allied forces had overcome the German defenses on all five beachheads, marking a significant breakthrough. Hitler's supposedly impenetrable Atlantic Wall had been breached in less than twenty-four hours, altering the course of history.


The D-Day landings allowed the Allies to access Western Europe and begin liberating countries like France and Belgium. This victory led to the Allies marching towards Germany and defeating them in Berlin.


On Wednesday, June 5 at 10:00 p.m., don't miss the special presentation "D-Day The Greatest Victory" on WPRI TV-12 as the 80th anniversary of D-Day is commemorated. This special program will honor the brave individuals who were part of the historic invasion by featuring interviews with veterans and their families nationwide. Gain insight into the sacrifices made on the beaches and hear the remarkable stories of survival from those who were there.


Probate Providence

Please note that the information provided in this blog is not intended to and should not be construed as legal, financial, or medical advice. The content, materials, and information presented in this blog are solely for general informational purposes and may not be the most up-to-date information available regarding legal, financial, or medical matters. This blog may also contain links to other third-party websites that are included for the convenience of the reader or user. Please note that Connelly Law Offices, Ltd. does not necessarily recommend or endorse the contents of such third-party sites. If you have any particular legal matters, financial concerns, or medical issues, we strongly advise you to consult your attorney, professional fiduciary advisor, or medical provider.

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