Tag Archives: D-Day

Mom’s Thomas Dale Class of ’44 reunion

By Lynn R. Mitchell

Mom Class of '44 reunion 2014

Back row: Eula (Osborne) Lucy, Lawrence “Larry” Klebert and Mary Arline (Wray) McGuire. Front: Ruth Martin Schrum, Sarah (Hanchey) Boettger and Beverley McLeod VonCanon.

The invitation to the Thomas Dale Class of 1944 reunion to celebrate 70 years since graduating read:

“Seventy years ago, June 7, 1944, we began a life as highly intelligent high school graduates. (At least our teachers did their best and each of us would have confessed “we knew it all.”) That day we said goodbye to our friends we had been with during the greater part of our days for the past eleven school years. We had done a lot of growing up during this time and had many memories. A few of those left on your original reunion committee decided we would get together on June 7, 2014 for lunch and catching up.”

So exactly 70 years later, this group of octogenarians met at a restaurant in Chester to reminisce. Reporter Melissa Wilfong joined them to record their thoughts for the Chester Village News (see Reminiscing with the Class of ’44). There were 57 who graduated on that day in 1944 and though only six could make the reunion, approximately a dozen of the graduates survive.

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70 years after Operation Overlord … D-Day 1944

D Day bannerBy Lynn R. Mitchell

Today marks the 70th anniversary of Operation Overlord, known to many as D-Day. The invasion that marked the turning point of World War II began in the early hours of June 6, 1944, when more than 1,200 airplanes provided airborne assault as 5,000 sea vessels took part in landing troops on the beaches of Normandy. It remains the largest amphibious landing in history involving 160,000 troops. More than 9,000 Allied troops were killed or wounded.

The sacrifices of so many helped secure the freedoms of countless. How many will keep the observance alive even as the Greatest Generation dies off and the memories fade?

One family’s wordsmith kept the memory of sacrifice and loss alive after penning a Memorial Day column some years ago. Lee Wolverton, then publisher and editor of the Waynesboro News-Virginian, remembered his grandfather who had given the ultimate sacrifice on D-Day when he parachuted in over enemy territory.

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