By U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa/U.S. 6th Fleet Public Affairs
Sailors aboard the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Roosevelt (DDG-80) participated in numerous events in honor of the 75th Anniversary of D-Day, including the the 75th D-Day Anniversary Ceremony at Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial in Normandy, France, June 6, 2019.
The Allied landing that took place 75 years ago on the beaches and surrounding areas of Normandy established a foothold in France which eventually led to its liberation of Paris and ultimately the overthrow of the Nazi regime.
The President of the United States Donald J. Trump, Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson, and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Russell Smith, were all in attendance at the American cemetery overlooking Omaha beach, the bloodiest and hardest fought battle on D-Day. The Roosevelt triad, along with 15 Sailors, attended the ceremony honoring those surviving veterans of D-Day and payed their respects to those who made the ultimate sacrifice for freedom.
"It’s a truly humbling and sobering experience to walk among the tombstones and see the thousands of names that never made it back from the war, " said Cmdr. Matthew Molmer, commanding officer of Roosevelt. "Representing the Roosevelt and the U.S. Navy on a monumental day like this is the opportunity of a lifetime and an experience that will stick with me and my crew for years to come."
Sailors also visited the town of Carentan with the 101st Airborne, and listened to accounts of the events that unfolded by actual paratroopers that fought on D-Day. Roosevelt Sailors performed a ceremony dedicated to the frogmen of WWII at Utah beach, and were given tours of the beachheads that were established by U.S. and Allied forces.
Roosevelt, homeported in Mayport, Florida, recently executed the NATO-led exercise Formidable Shield 2019 and is currently deployed to the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations.
U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.