On June 6 1944, Allied troops stormed the beaches of Normandy (France) to open the way to Germany from the West. Victory in the Normandy campaign would come at a terrible cost. The Canadians suffered the most casualties of any division in the British Army Group.
The Canadian Army’s 3rd Infantry Division and 2nd Armoured Brigade seized the beach and its seaside villages while under intense fire from German defenders — an extraordinary example of military skill, reinforced by countless acts of personal courage. The 3rd Infantry Division took heavy casualties in its first wave of attack but took control of the beach by the end of the day. More than 14,000 Canadian soldiers landed or parachuted into France on D-Day. The Royal Canadian Navy contributed 110 warships and 10,000 sailors and the RCAF contributed 15 fighter and fighter-bomber squadrons to the assault. There were 1,074 Canadian casualties, including 359 killed.
June 6, 2019 marked the 75th anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy.
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Remembrance Day 2019
“We got in those boats and the coast was terrible,” recalled Joseph Edwardson, who was 20 on D-Day and a member of the Royal Regina Rifles, one of the first Canadian units to step foot in Nazi-occupied France.
“It was a bad, bad morning. And the water was splashing into the craft and they were starting to take water, so we had to use our helmets to bail some of the water out.”