Part II of the Beaches of Normandy Then and Now Series

Omaha Beach

Page 2

Reproduced from Wikipedia

Americans killed on the beach have been collected and are awaiting burial.

Reproduced from Wikipedia

A Navy communications command post has been set up on the seawall to coordinate further landings in the hours after the beach was cleared.

Reproduced from Wikipedia

A halftrack drives through the beach exit in Easy Red sector, the first draw to fall to the Americans.

Reproduced from Wikipedia

American troops advance inland through the Easy Red draw, below them is a knocked out German anti-tank bunker. There are German bunkers still in place all along the bluffs on the edge of farmers fields that have been overgrown by thick brush.

Omaha Beach Today
Reproduced from the town of Colleville

In the days after D-Day American equipment presses inland through the town of Colleville, just behind the beach. This is part of a series of photos hung throughout the town to commemorate liberation by the Americans.

Reproduced from the town of Colleville

French civilians turn out to greet American troops pushing inland.

Reproduced from the town of Colleville

GIs file past the ruined church at Colleville. The ubiquitous churches in Normandy offered the best vantage points for German artillery spotters and snipers, and soon the Allies learned to destroy the tall steeples as a matter of course.

Pointe du Hoc

Several kilometres west of Omaha Beach is Pointe du Hoc. Atop sheer 90 foot cliffs overlooking the ocean the Germans had emplaced a heavy coastal artillery battery that could potentially wreak havoc on the fleets steaming towards Omaha and Utah. The decision was taken to neutralize the guns by a daring assault by American Rangers, who would scale the cliffs and seize the positions. On the morning of June 6, 225 Rangers launched grappling hooks up the cliffs, and in the face of heavy German fire, scaled the cliffs and seized the bunkers, only to find that the guns had already been moved inland.

For the next two days the Rangers awaited relief from the forces at Omaha Beach, all the while fending off ferocious German counterattacks. When the main invasion force finally linked up with the beleagured Rangers, only 90 of the original 225 men were still standing. Remarkably, after the war the battlefield was left as it was and the land was gifted to the United States by France. All the crumbling German bunkers and deep craters from the bombardment remain there today.

Reproduced from World War II Photofinder

The observation bunker at Pointe du Hoc has been restored.

Reproduced from Wikipedia

Colonel Rudder's temporary headquarters set up beside the blasted remnants of a German anti-aircraft bunker at Pointe Du Hoc on D-Day+2. I'm about five feet off from the right perspective, a fence was preventing me from getting any closer.

A few more photos of Pointe du Hoc today
Beaches of Normandy Then and Now Series



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