Thursday, September 04, 2014

Conneaut, Ohio Hosts the Nation's Largest D-Day Reenactment

From Belt Magazine:

It's easy to laugh at the hobby of civilians recreating, long ago battles but beneath it is often a sincere attempt to honor and experience what others might have felt.
"D-Day Conneaut now the largest D-Day reenactment in the country, began in 1999 when a small group of reenactors at Conneaut Park recreated “Operation Overlord,” the code name for the 1944 Normandy operation. The annual event was not made public until 2007 and was later moved to Conneaut Township Park, just north of State Route 531. D-Day Conneaut is funded entirely through donations. Its organizing staff and participating reenactors are unpaid."
The town sits on Lake Erie almost exactly at the Pennsylvania, Ohio border now draws thousands from all over the country including the last few, who actually did live through D-Day.

"A ceremony commences to honor Raymond Woods, of Ottawa, Ohio, who served aboard the USS O’Brien on D-Day. “Mr. Woods, to show its eternal gratitude, the government of the French Republic has decided to award you the Legion of Honor,” says the French Consul Honoraire, atop the stage with Woods. “The award of France’s highest honor is most appropriate for someone who helped liberate France’s soil. How appropriate that we honor you today, in part for your service on the beaches of Normandy, at this wonderful celebration of D-Day on the beaches of Conneaut.”"
The whole piece, is well done and pretty moving.

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