The National D-Day Memorial in Bedford welcomes a host of World War II veterans for its family day 1940s festival Saturday.
Veterans from the 8th Air Force, the 29th Infantry Division, Merchant Marines, Navy, Coast Guard, Marines and other military units will be on hand to talk to visitors throughout the day
One of those veterans is D-Day paratrooper Norwood Thomas. Thomas joined the U.S. Army in March 1942 and was assigned to the 101st Airborne Division where he parachuted into Normandy just 4 miles inland of Utah Beach on 6 June 1942
Mills Hubert Hobbs, a veteran of the 29th Infantry Division who stormed the beaches on D-Day will be on site. Hobbs landed on Omaha Beach and remained with his company from D-Day to the Elbe River in Germany, earning three Bronze Stars and two Purple Hearts before being discharged in October 1945.
Also in attendance will be Bill Overstreet, a member of the 357th Fighter Group, 363rd Fighter Squadron. Overstreet flew mission after mission providing cover for bomb runs over enemy territory, anti-sub patrol, and flying supplies for the Free French. D-Day found him at 20,000 feet at 2AM to protect the Allied ground forces from enemy aircraft
Hans Meyer grew up in Brandenburg Germany and begin flying at the age of 14. At 17 he joined the Luftwaffe and was assigned to Fighter Squadron 54 on the Eastern Front. Before age 18 he was credited with five confirms against Russian aircraft. On one mission he was shot down and was captured by the Russians. He escaped to rejoin his unit
During the day all D-Day veterans will meet with the public. Events include speeches from D-Day veterans and dozens of living historians will also be on site depicting the wartime era.
The event includes artifact displays and more than 40 activity stations, all family-friendly and hands-on.
Live musical entertainment will occur throughout the day