Omaha Beach and the American Cemetery

Probably one of the saddest and most powerful experiences was visiting the D-Day beaches in Normandy. The solemness of this once-battlefield was punctuated by the cloudy, grey day and ceaseless wind. The wind would blow sand up into the air, making it look like the wispy and restless ghosts of the long-dead soldiers that had fought on the very beach I was now walking on. The concrete memorial held many small gifts of flowers and crosses at its base. There were still remnants of German bunkers on the beach and the fields above it. We entered into the Canadian bunker, where they secretly and successfully deactivated the sea mines the Germans had implemented to prevent Allied forces from reaching the shores.

I felt the past still very much present on Omaha Beach, the only beach we were able to visit. Even after almost 80 years, the air was heavy with the memory and remnants of war.

We also visited the amazing American Cemetery that left me without any words. The sheer number of graves makes one fall silent and walk slowly through the white markers, cross-shaped, as if in a waking dream. A heart-breaking experience. Yet I must say, every American should go to this incredible memorial of the American effort in World War II. It made me quite proud and privileged to have seen it. I sat on the quarry at the edge of the cemetery, where large pines hung almost protectively over the graves. The wind had died down creating an atmosphere of quiet and peace. I felt the most at peace sitting on the stones making these two small drawings of the American Cemetery. To me, they are the most poignant and simple I've probably ever made.

Next: Dinan


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