Today in History: D-Day

In the largest amphibious attack in history, Allied Forces (Canada, Great Britain, the United States) crossed the English Channel and landed on five beachheads in Normandy, France. “Operation Overlord” consisted of some 6,000 landing craft, ships and over 13,000 aircraft consisting of 155,000 troops. Gold, Juno, Sword, and Utah beaches were taken with light resistance. However, Omaha proved to be tougher for the Americans than Utah, and 2,000 troops were lost. The Allies would be victorious, eventually leading to the liberation of France by the end of August, 1944 and German surrender the following year.

The morning of the invasion, Syracuse reporter E. R. “Curly” Vadeboncoeur had a colorful message for Adolph Hitler, which you can read a part of below.

Who was Curly? E. R. “Curly” Vadeboncoeur was an American radio and television journalist in Syracuse. He began his career as a writer for the Syracuse Journal, but soon switched over to broadcasting and joined WSYR Radio in Syracuse, then owned by Newhouse Broadcasting. During World War II, he traveled to the Pacific for a month as a war correspondent for WSYR/NBC; according to the Syracuse Press Club, “[h]e is believed to be the only war correspondent accredited personally by Gen. Douglas MacArthur.” Vadeboncoeur eventually became the General Manager of WSYR radio and television station operations, and was actively involved in the expansion of Newhouse Broadcasting’s holdings in states ranging from Pennsylvania to Oregon. He was inducted into the New York State Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame, and was known as the “dean of Syracuse newsmen.”