70TH D-DAY MEMORIAL CONCERT – JUNE 6, 2014

The Clovis Community band will be one of approximately 5 bands and wind ensembles from the United States performing at this historic commemoration. The full band will be conducted by Colonel Arnald D. Gabriel - Conductor Emeritus of the United States Air Force Band, and member of the United States Army’s 29th Infantry Division that fought in the Battle of Normandy. The honor band will rehearse in Paris in advance of the June 6 performance in Normandy. The Clovis Community Band will perform additional concerts in France and England. This event will be produced by the American Veterans Center and Music Celebrations International with support from the Department of Defense Office of Commemorations.

THE DAY THAT CHANGED THE WORLD

The dawn of June 6, 1944 (D-Day) saw one of the largest, most dramatic invasions in world history. Over 160,000 forces, including 70,000 Americans landed on 50 miles of Normandy Coast. 195,700 Allied navel and merchant nay personnel in over 5,000 ships were also involved. Over 2,000 Americans lost their lives storming the beach head to secure the high ground. More than 8,000 others would be lost in the days and weeks following as the Allied forces secured the surrounding countryside to establish a foothold on Continental Europe.

No words can describe the overwhelming feelings of joy, the flowing tears of hope and happiness, and the expression of gratitude, that the French exuded upon their liberation from the Nazi occupation. This momentous and daring event marked the end of Adolph Hitler’s reign, and a new day for humankind.

70 years later, we remember and honor all the men and women memorialized at the American Cemetery at Colleville-sur-Mer in Normandy, France. 9,387 graves are located on these hallowed grounds, along with the etched names of 1,557 American soldiers whose bodies were never found. It is to these men and women that we salute, revere, and honor their sacrifice.