These are some highlights from the News Journal 75 years ago on June 6, 1944:
‘ALLIES ESTABLISH BEACHHEAD’
‘INITIAL LOSSES ARE LESS THAN EXPECTED’
‘Invaders storm inland several miles in France; Landing in great force is made early Tuesday in Normandy section of France; 11,000 planes bomb, strafe enemy’
“SUPREME HEADQUARTERS, Allied Expeditionary Force (AP) — Allied troops landed on the Normandy coast of France in tremendous strength by cloudy daylight today and stormed several miles inland with tanks and infantry in the grand assault which Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower called a crusade in which ‘we will accept nothing less than full victory’.
German broadcasts said the Allies penetrated several kilometers between Caen and Isigny, which are 35 miles apart and, respectively, nine and two miles from the sea.
German opposition apparently was less effective than expected, although fierce in many respects, and the Germans said they were bringing reinforcements continuously up to the coast, where ‘a battle for life or death is in progress’.”
‘Invasion finds U.S. Navy in forefront’
“WITH ALLIED NAVAL FORCES (AP) — The United States Navy struck the beaches of Western Europe today with torrents of shells in shepherding the Army’s invasion troops onto the hostile coast seared and pitted by thousands of aerial bombs.”
‘20 Japanese ships sunk in two days’
‘Gen. MacArthur announces destruction of destroyer, freighter’
“(AP) — Destruction of Japan’s dwindling seapower mounted today with gen. Douglas MacArthur’s announcement of the sinking of a destroyer and a freighter, losses which boosted the enemy’s total to 20 ships reported in two days.
Liberator bombers, blasting the southern invasion road to the Philippines, potted the Japanese destroyer off Halmahers and the freighter was bagged by attack planes in New Guinea waters.”
‘MANY CLINTON COUNTIANS ARE IN INVASION FORCES’
‘Gliders make landings back of Nazi lines’
“Gliders that were conceived and propagated by the Glider Branch Engineering Division, Materiel Command, now located at the Clinton County Army Air Field along with paratroopers, landed deep in France Tuesday.
Hundreds of CG-4A gliders, holding 15 men and their equipment … landed in France at the start of the invasion after cutting loose from their twin-engined C-47 tow planes over the targets.”
‘INVASION START ENDS DAYS OF WAITING HERE’
‘Several men from county in paratroops and airborne units in area’
“Although fearful of the terrible costs it may take in their husbands, fathers, brothers and sweethearts, most Clinton Countians were somewhat relieved Tuesday morning that the terrible days of anxiety, waiting for the invasion, were over and it was finally started.
While they were receiving the final training for their action of Tuesday morning, stories were sent to the News Journal about glider men, Sgt. Vernon Huffenberger, 141 Ruby Ave., ammunition sergeant; Cpl. Harold W. Kaufman, Wilmington, a special service non-com; and Pvt. Gene D. Padget, Clarksville, driver.
S/Sgt. Donald Elliott of Wilmington also is a member of the glider troops, while Major Otho E. Holmes, Wilmington, is plans and training officer for a parachute infantry unit that may have been in the initial landing.
There are also many other Clinton County men in other units of the European Theater of Operations.
Special services will be held at the Presbyterian Church tonight as planned on D-Day.”
(Editor’s Note: Vernon Huffenberger was captured by Germans and was a prisoner of war; he was eventually safely released.)