Sixty-six years ago, on June 6, 1944, thousands of men crashed upon the occupied beaches of Normandy in the perhaps vain hope that they could wipe clean the continent of Europe from the tyrannical scourge of Nazism. We here, living today, are the inheritors of a great debt unto those soldiers. Each and every one of us who reads this post today: I urge you to seek out, if you can find them, a serviceman who was there that day--who survived against odds so great that they seemed insurmountable--and thank them for their service.
Additionally, thank them in place of their fallen comrades who never left those bloody beaches. Evil was fully confronted that day by men who, though they were afraid, did their ultimate to serve the right, the good, and the free. They did their job with dignity and honor; and for that, you and I, mere mortals in comparison to their profound act, must graciously bend knee before them in great praise and thanks.
Though I am too young to know of those horrid days of absolute war, I know somewhat of their sacrifice, and this moves me in ways no other thing can ever compare.
Servicemen of that dreadful day: I salute you, though I do not have the right to do so. May your woes be over, may the hurts you have suffered be cleared, may the wars we fight be the last--and may you who are not with us, rest in eternal peace.
This debt to them, I am unworthy to repay. Perhaps one day, I shall be able.
In the name of all the fallen, the murdered, and the missing: I thank you and hope I can make you proud.