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Living History: Omaha Beach

Omaha_MasterBuilders
Diorama by Yitzy Kasowitz & Cody Osell Vehicles by Daniel Siskind

Omaha Beach was the Allied code name for part of the invasion of German-occupied France. The invasion began on June 6th, 1944 (D-Day) and it was the beginning of the end for Germany’s stranglehold on Europe. The primary objective at Omaha was to secure a beachhead 5 miles deep, between Port-en-Bessin and the Vire River. Fight- ing raged from sunrise until well into the afternoon. The allied forces began to secure the beach at 1:00 pm, and General Huebner’s command post was established at 7:00 that evening.

Omaha2This diorama takes place on D-Day + 1, when the Allied Forces destroyed the scattered remnants of enemy groups which still held positions on the perimeter of the beachhead. The foothold gained at Omaha was the most tenuous across all the D-Day beaches. With the original objective yet to be achieved, the priority for the allies was to link up all the Normandy beachheads. During the course of June 7, while still under random shellfire, the beach was prepared as a supply area. Surplus cargo ships were deliberately sunk to form an artificial breakwater and, while still less than planned, 1,429 tons of stores were landed that day.

Once the beachhead had been secured, Omaha became the location of one of the two Mulberry harbours, prefabricated artificial harbors towed in pieces across the English Channel and assembled just off shore. Construction of ‘Mulberry A’ at Omaha began the day after D-Day with the scuttling of ships to form a breakwater.

Today at Omaha jagged remains of the harbor can be seen at low tide. At the top of the bluff overlooking Omaha near Colleville is the American cemetery. As late as 1988, particles of shrapnel, as well as glass and iron beads resulting from munitions explosions, have been found in the sand of the beach.

Normandy_Invasion,_June_1944

You can see this display (as well as meet 2 of the builders) this weekend at BrickUniverse Raleigh.  Come visit the Brickmania Road Team and experience some amazing MOCs!

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This entry was posted by Mariah Lamkin.

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