Normandy and a World War II Survivor...

One of the things I love about being a flight attendant is meeting people and learning more about them.

I was on a layover in Austin this past weekend and met a cute 80 year old women named Micheline. After talking for a few minutes I learned that she grew up in Normandy, France. During World War II her family fled the bombings in Normandy to find safety in Paris. Just two weeks after moving to Paris their home was bombed. Her family waited 6 hours under the rubble for help to arrive but sadly two of her siblings didn't survive. Micheline was in the hospital for 6 months while her mom spent the year recuperating. Towards the end of our conversation Micheline said that living through World War II made her "strong as a bull".

Micheline was in Paris when the soldiers came a shore on the D-Day Beaches. A few years ago I visited the Beaches and Cemetery in Normandy.

The Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial is located on a bluff overlooking Omaha Beach. Over 9000 soldiers that lost their lives in Normandy were buried there. The families of the deceased had the choice to have the remains buried in Normandy or flown home. About 60% chose to have the bodies flown home while the rest stayed in Normandy.

Sometimes we take our freedom for granted. I know I do but when you visit the D-Day Beaches and Cemetery you are grateful for the freedoms gained on June 6, 1944 on the Western coast of France. I think every American, Brit and Canadian should visit Normandy if given the chance. It's just a 2-3 hour drive from Paris. In upcoming post I'll write about things to see near Normandy.


The Good Life on Less! said...

Sounds like an interesting lady ... you'd have to be tough after all that! Had no idea that many died ... if/when I go back to France I want to go to Normandy. Didn't know there were that many buried there.

AmyK said...

The lady would have been a young teenager. My mother was her age during the war but living in the middle of it would have been terrifing. I hope I can make that trip one day. I would love to show my appreciation. I have been to Arlington numerous times and to the Viet Nam Wall but have yet to see the WW II Memorial in DC. So many have given so much.

Normandy american cemetery said...

Thanks for sharing this post. NormandyAmericanCemetery and Memorial is located in France. Omaha Beach is a most important beaches during the Normandy Invasion. Accommodation and food is available in this city at reasonable rate. Best time to visit this place is August to October.cemetery is opened for public visit. For more details refer