National D-Day Memorial wraps up 75th anniversary festivities

Memorial held church service replicating what troops heard before D-Day

BEDFORD, Va. – National D-Day Memorial visitors got to hear what the soldiers heard before the battle of their lives.

The memorial concluded its D-Day 75th anniversary festivities Sunday with a church service that replicated the sermon troops listened to before they stormed the beaches of Normandy.

D-Day Memorial Education Director John Long told the visitors it was important for them to see D-Day from the soldiers' perspective.

"While they have the courage and optimism that is typical of 19 and 20-year-old men, they understand that soon they will be sent on a voyage from which many of them will not return," Long said.

"What they were doing was monumental," said Mark Gleason, who visited the D-Day Memorial from northern Virginia. "It was something that was going to change the world and they were fighting an evil that had to be stopped."

The 29th Infantry band also performed at the church service, which was moved inside due to weather.

About the Author: