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For Immediate Release
Date: February 16, 2024

Michael
O'Day
Public Affairs Officer

706-715-9683

Echoes of D-Day Valor

Bridging Generations Through Friendship and Remembrance

Story by Stacy Daniels
Carentan Students visit Fort Campbell - 80th Anniversary D-Day

Imagine being a child in Carentan, France, on June 6, 1944. Perhaps you and your family are drawn to the living room window and are in awe at the incident in your view. Transpiring in front of your eyes are the initial moments of an event that will eventually be known worldwide as “D-Day.” Your family is overwhelmed by the sight of a multitude of American soldiers ~ dropping from the air! 

The opening moments of the landings at Normandy began what would be a 33-day battle of continuous fighting, including a bitter battle for the town of Carentan, France. Those initial moments were led, in part, by paratroopers from the 101st Airborne Division, the Screaming Eagles. 

June 6, 2024, will mark the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings. Mr. Patrick Fissot, Co-Founder of the Normandy Victory Museum in Carentan, is passionate about keeping gratitude for the 101st Airborne Division alive in the young people of Carentan by teaching them the importance of remembering their town’s history.

Recently, arriving with 24 students from Lycee Sivard de Beaulieu High School, Monsieur Fissot visited Fort Campbell and Hopkinsville, Kentucky. Students learned many things about the 101st Airborne Division, including a stop at Fort Campbell High School to visit with military kids!

A select group of Fort Campbell High School students welcomed the French students. Both groups joined in the lively singing of a popular French song, “Aux Champs Elysees,” shared a delicious lunch buffet of items favored by American teens, and spent valuable time in FCHS classrooms exchanging conversation about the two cultures and the cherished relationship between the 101st and the city of Carentan. FCHS students also joined the French students in rappelling at the Sabalauski Air Assault School!

The recent exchange between students from Lycee Sivard de Beaulieu High School and Fort Campbell High School has beautifully reinforced the enduring friendship between Carentan and the 101st Airborne Division. Their shared experiences—singing, learning, and bonding—serve not just as a tribute to the courage of those who fought on D-Day but also as a bridge connecting the past and future. This gathering of young hearts and minds ensures the legacy of unity, courage, and mutual respect will last as a vivid reminder that the spirit of those historic bonds remains alive, fostering a future where the values of bravery, sacrifice, and friendship continue to be cherished and celebrated.

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