83rd infantry division, atlantic wall, festung st malo, freedom way 1944, hitler, liberation of saint-malo, norway, ohio, reenactors, spain, surrenders, thunderbolt, voie de la liberte 1944, world war ii
samedi le 17 août 2019 – Saturday August 17, 2019
Today is the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Saint-Malo, August 17, 1944. A ceremony is held every year on August 17, but this year it was a bit special. The internet site World War II Today daily highlights an event from the war. Today it had Saint-Malo as its focus. It would be worth your while to read about the liberation by clicking on this link: A shattered city – ‘Festung St Malo’ – surrenders. It will open in a separate window. The rest of the post will make more sense after reading the World War II Today post.
We attended the anniversary ceremony this morning at 11h. It was at the citadel site of the German underground bunkers which had been built as part of Hitler’s Atlantic Wall. The “wall” stretched from Norway to the border of Spain. Here are our pictures from the ceremony today.
The last 3 pictures above are of a marker which is part of the VOIE DE LA LIBERTE 1944 – FREEDOM WAY 1944. There are around 1,200 of these stone markers in France which correspond to the route of the US Army’s liberation of France. There is a short Wikipedia entry about the Freedom Way markers if you are interested.
The American Army 83rd Infantry Division were the liberators of Saint-Malo. The 83rd Infantry Division was nicknamed the Thunderbolt or Ohio Division. The word OHIO is embed in the shoulder insignia of the Division.
OHIO is spelled out in the circle.
You can learn more about the 83rd Infantry Division at this this link. 83rd Infantry Division (be sure to read the section for World War II).
Short videos of the US Army reenactment camp.
Additional videos on Youtube
Here two movies from the assault on Saint-Malo and the German surrender. Neither has audio, but they are interesting to watch.
Nelda Mccrocklin said:
What a great time to be in France. And such history !! Wish some of our younger generation could experience what you saw today. The Ohio insignia was really interesting. Thanks for sharing this part of history. News here—Refresh program now offered on Fridays too. And on a sad note—Cindy Helder’s brother died yesterday after a years fight with pancreatic cancer. See you soon !!
Nice to hear about the 83rd. I never knew about the Ohio connection – love the logo. Also, love the vintage BSA motorcycles. Not fast but rugged. Thanks for sharing – continue to enjoy!
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