D-Day Timeline

So, did anything big happen on this date? Yep.

0630 hours—Omaha Beach

At H-Hour, 0630 in the morning the 1st and 29th Infantry Divisions land the first waves of troops under heavy fire resulting in massive casualties. The first waves are relentlessly cut down by German machine gun and mortar fire. Company A of the 116th Regiment of the 29th Division sees 19 young men from the National Guard in Bedford, Virginia, killed during the day. Those few men who survive the initial slaughter attempt to seek cover behind beach obstacles and the dead bodies of their comrades. Those who are able crawl towards the sea wall, known as the shingle, under intense enemy fire.

Corporal Kenneth Kassel, combat engineer, loses his helmet changing landing craft in the assault. A fellow soldier not going ashore gives Kassel his helmet, saying only “You might need this.” Reaching Omaha Beach, a bullet pierces the front of Kassel’s helmet but is deflected. While the helmet saves Kassel’s life, another piece of shrapnel lodges in his head and has to be surgically removed by a doctor.

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