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D-Day Normandy Landing Beaches WW2

The Normandy Beach Landings

Utah Beach

The 4th U.S. Infantry Division landed here from 06.30 onwards at La Madeleine, nearly 2 miles south of the intended landing. Fortunately, the German defences were weak at this point.

By midday the beach was completely cleared. The 3rd Battalion of the 8th Infantry Regiment had pushed a detachment inland about 8 miles to Chef-du-Pont, and this had linked up with 82nd Airborne Division. 23,250 men, 1,700 vehicles and 1,695 tons of supplies has been landed.

Omaha Beach

The 1st U.S. Infantry Division landed here from 06.30 onwards. However, there was a rough sea at the foot of the cliffs. The first assault wave suffered tremendous heavy loses.

At 07.00 when the second wave went in, the Germans opened up with artillery. The beach had not been cleared of anti-invasion devices and the tide was rising. A few assault groups managed to reach the top of the beach.

Two destroyers moved close inshore and shelled the German gun positions. The Pointed du Hoc was climbed and captured by 225 Rangers, but they were pinned down by an enemy counter-attack until D.Day + 2. Eventually, a small bridgehead was established, but this proved to be the most difficult of all the landings.

Gold Beach

The 50th British Infantry Division landed here, beginning at 07.25 in front of Ver, Meuvaines, Asnelles. Good work by the Engineers in clearing the landing areas, Infantry fought their way on D-Day.

No.47 Royal Marines Commandos reached their objective to the west, Port-en-Bessin, which it entered on D.Day plus 2, thus linking up with the Americans.

Juno Beach

The 3rd Canadian Infantry Division landed here from 07.00 onwards. The 7th Brigade was established in Creully by 17.00 The 8th Brigade landed at Bernieres and St-Aubin. Strongly defended, two heavily fortified radar stations held out until the 17th June.

One objective Carpiquet, was not reached, but a considerable bridgehead was established. Liaison with 3rd British Division on the left flank had not been made.

Sword Beach

The 3rd British Infantry Division began landing at 07.30 between Lion-sur-Mer and Ouistreham-Riva-Bella. It's mission was to take Caen. But although the villages of Hermanville, Periers, Beuville, Bieville and Blainville were over-run, a vigorous counter-attack by 21st Panzer Division reached Bieville at 16.00 and then Periers.

No. 4 Commandos under Commander Philippe Kieller, landed at 08.45 and put the fortified position at Riva-Bella out of action, and linked up with the Airborne troops at Benouville by 13.30.

A deep bridgehead was held, but Caen was still in German hands!

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