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Can adians commemorate D-Day - the first day of the major Allied invasion of occupied France that led to the end of the Second World War. It was a massive undertaking, involving the Allied fighting forces on land, sea and in the air. On June 6, 1944, more than 450 Canadians parachuted inland before dawn on the beaches of Normandy and engaged the enemy. A few hours later, 15,000 Canadian troops began coming ashore at Juno Beach in the face of enemy fire. Their courage and skill helped lead the Allied advance and soon, the Canadians had captured three shoreline positions. Through the summer of 1944 the soldiers of the First Canadian Army, the Royal Canadian Air Force and the Royal Canadian Navy continued fighting against a powerful enemy, suffering and inflicting heavy casualties. On August 25, 1944, Paris was liberated by the Allies, ending the Battle of Normandy. Nine months later, the Allies achieved final victory in Europe. The triumph at D-Day and the Battle of Normandy was not without sacrifice. Of the 90,000 Canadians and Newfoundlanders who served in this military campaign, 5,000 would make the ultimate sacrifice. Canada remembers its heroes, pay tribute to their legacy and honour those who continue to serve. We enjoy our freedom today thanks to these brave Canadians. It is our duty to remember them. Lest we forget.
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D-Day and the Normandy Campaign
In All Our Sons' by David Craig