Sainte-Mere-Eglise: An American Sanctuary in Normandy 1944-1948

Paperback
On June 6, 1944, the village of Sainte-Mere-Eglise was placed in the forefront of the greatest military operation ever seen either before or since. From that date on, a date synonymous with hope, the renown of this village went far beyond its borders. What are the reasons for this continuing renown? Hollywood has undoubtedly helped in popularizing this iconic site, but what really happened on the square of the village and elsewhere on the night of D-Day? How many days did the battle last? How fierce was it? Would the story suddenly stop in the days after the combats? Based on over 400 photos, often unpublished, this book shines a light on the different phases of the battle of Sainte-Mere-Eglise. From the first drops of American parachutists of the 82nd Airborne Division to the violent German counter-attacks of the following days, not to mention the plight of the civilians, this rigorous and engaging inquest will transport the reader into the heart of the combats, those experienced at the level of human beings. New fact: this work revisits a chapter which is little known yet fundamental to this great story: handling the dead during and after the battle followed by the creation of great temporary military cemeteries around Sainte-Mere-Eglise. The presence of 13,000 Americans fallen in this tiny area would have a profound impact on the views and the lives of the natives. For Sainte-Mere-Eglise and its inhabitants, the unthinkable had become unforgettable.