Monday, June 06, 2011
D - Day
Today, we commemorate the 67th anniversary of the largest amphibious attack in the history of the world, the landing of between 160,000 and 175,000 Allied troops on the coast of Normandy, France.
Starting at around 11 PM on June 5th, approximately 13,000 American parachutists would descend upon the peninsula via hundreds of twin-engined C-47s. The C-47 was a DC-3 aircraft that held 18 parachutists (known as a "stick" to the men). At 3:00 AM, the gliders carrying heavier equipment (jeeps and antitank guns) and reinforcements began to arrive in the area. At 6:30 AM everyone else hit the beaches.
At the Dover Air Force Base Air Mobility Command Museum there are both a restored C47A and a glider. Since it is free it is a very interesting museum to go to and I am always amazed at how small the inside of WWII planes are and how it must have taken a hundred of them to haul the troops and supplies that just one plane can haul today.