9,000 Fallen Soldiers Stenciled into Sand at Normandy Beach
To commemorate “Peace Day”, British artists Jamie Wardley and Andy Moss, in combination with many volunteers, went to Normandy Beach and stenciled the silhouettes of the 9,000 soldiers who lost their lives on D-Day during World War II. With rakes and stencils pads shaped like bodies in hand, the group completed the temporary art installation titled The Fallen 9000.
The work is meant to serve as a stark visual reminder of the civilians, allied forces and Germans who died during the beach landings at Arromanches on D-Day: June 6th, 1944. The initial team began with 60 volunteers, but as word spread to nearby residents, an additional 500 people came to help with the temporary installation. Although the stenciled body impressions in the sand only lasted a few hours before the tide washed them away, the photographs serve as a reminder of the horrors of war and of the cherished lives lost.
When they were courting, John and Peggy had developed a special signal so that they could always find each other in crowded places, like Coney Island. It was what John called his ‘love whistle,’ a sweet, melodious whistle in four beats he used only when he wanted to get Peggy’s attention. When John arrived at the bottom of the steps leading to her family’s home in Bensonhurst on December thirtieth, a great deal had changed in his life, but he remembered how to do the love whistle. When Peggy heard it, he says, ‘She came running out and almost took my head off.’ Her memory: ‘I had just finished making a big WELCOME HOME sign and I was talking to John’s uncle when I heard the whistle. I just ran down the steps and hugged him.’
- Tom Brokaw, The Greatest Generation
(This made me smile on the subway this morning. So, so sweet.)
Members of the first contingent of the Canadian Women’s Army Corps (C.W.A.C.) entering Hamm, Germany, 12 June 1945.
(L-R): Sgt. Jane Shaddock, Pte. Polly Pollyblank. Pte. Martin MacPherson is at rear.
Mary ”Sherry” Shadburne at Camp Patrick Henry in Virginia before embarkation for overseas service.