Home > 20th Century > World War II > National D-Day Memorial

This large memorial park is dominated by a large granite Overlord Arch commemorating the storming of the beaches on D-Day June 6, 1944. Bedford, Virginia had the highest number of losses per capita of any city/town in the U.S. and 19 of the 35 lost died in the first 15 minutes of the attack on the beaches. The memorial park consists of 88-acres divided into roughly three major plazas that represent the before, during and after the D-Day invasion. There are statues of all of the major leaders of World War II and bronze plaques honoring individuals and units who served around the granite wall encircling the pool. The middle plaza is stunning in its artistic recreation of the attack on the US assigned beaches at Normandy. Water jets simulate gunfire at the soldiers who are disembarking from a landing craft and wading or crawling ashore. Some lay dying while others continue to move forward and then scale the wall to the arch. On top is a poignant small bronze statue of a rifle with barrel pointing into the ground and a helmet sitting on the butt end of the rifle. A flag lined walkway leads from the Overlord Arch. The entire memorial continues to grow with new additions and is wonderful visual feast that draws in the spectator.

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