George Smith Morris 175th Inf. Reg. 29th Inf. Div.
The 175th had been scheduled to land on Omaha Beach, in the afternoon of D-day. The day went by, as we have seen above, with much confusion and congestion on the beach. The schedule had to be abandoned after the first two waves and the 175th saw itself forced to sit the first day out on board of the ships that they had boarded on June the fourth. The forced prolonged stay on board of the transport ships didn't do much good to the sea-sickness of the men. Others had told George that the average machine-gunner, of which he was one, only had three to four minutes to live in combat. Being a young shy boy, that had been drafted directly from the countryside of Kentucky, he believed these stories. It was no wonder that George was one of the men that was still sick of fear when he landed with the 175th regiment in mid morning of June the 7th. They found that the beach was covered with the dead bodies of hundreds of comrades. On the place he landed, he was forced to walk on top of bodies, because there was no where else to go. Some of the men mentally snapped at the sight of this horror. Small groups were still fighting near the beach. The men of the 175th were directed off the beach as soon as possible an advanced on their first objective, leaving the horror of the beach behind.
Bob Salley 326th A/B Eng. Bat. 101st ABN Division
I went into Normandy by boat on D-day+1. We had some engineer equipment with us that they didn't have room for in the Gliders. I crossed the channel on the Susan B Anthony. I was on this ship together with approximately three-thousand other soldiers.
On the morning of that June 7, at about 0800 when the ship was five miles of the coast and nearest to Utah Beach, the ship struck a German mine which blew a hole in the side, below the waterline. We were very fortunate that the ship sunk very slowly, so that we had time to put the men in the Landingcraft and lifeboats that were strapped to the sides of the ship. Other ships came to the rescue. When deck of the ship disappeared below the water on and a half hours after it had struck the mine, all the soldiers had been evacuated to other ships. There had not been time to take any equipment with us, so we had no choice then to join the rest of our unit that had landed by glider, with nothing more than the stuff we were carrying.
Read about his memories of the Holland drop here...