In about two months, the United States and the world will commemorate the 70th anniversary of one of the most important days in military history.
D-Day was June 6th, 1944.
But, this year a group of Mobile High School students will be on hand for the special ceremonies.
It has been almost seventy years since thousands of Allied troops gave their lives in the D-Day landings on the beaches of Normandy.
More than 156,000 Allied soldiers took part in the invasion, which led to the liberation of France and, ultimately, the end of World War II.
The Baker High School Junior ROTC will be going to Normandy in June to participate in the 70th anniversary of D-Day.
1SG Willie Lewis, a teacher with the Baker JROTC, said “They had chosen one school from each state, and we were the ones chosen out of Alabama.”
When asked how excited she was about the trip, student C/MSgt. Nathalie Decker said, “On a scale of one to ten, probably a thousand.”
But, the 25 students do face a challenge before they depart for Europe.
Each has to raise $3500 to pay for the trip.
They’ve been busy organizing fund-raisers.
Cyndi Eads, a parent, said, “We’ve done everything from candy sales to working at different local restaurants for tip sales.”
Baker Student C/MSgt. Abigail Brock said “We’ve been selling pretzels. We’ve been selling candy. We’ve been doing a lot of stuff to get this.”
MEETING THE VETERANS
The students will march in the memorial parade and get a hands-on history lesson.
Another student, C/Col. Brandon Light, said, “I’m looking forward to spending time with the veterans. I’m looking forward to actually getting to have a face-to-face conversation with these people who fought for this great country.”
C/MSgt. Joseph Wells, Jr., speaking of the veterans, said, “They fought, risked their lives. Many of them didn’t come back. A lot of them had to say goodbye to their mothers for the last time before they went over there. Its really sad.”
The students are set to leave June 3rd.
They will walk on the same ground where allied soldiers landed June 6th, 1944.
When asked if he could imagine what it must have been like to be a a part of that invasion, Wells said, “It must have been hell incarnate for them.”
And Light, when asked what he will tell some of the veterans when you meet them, he said, “Thank you for your service, sir.”
Donations can be made to the website “baker to normandy-dot-com”