We owe our freedom to the men who lived and died that day in Normandy, and to soldiers past and present.'
U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell released the following statement Wednesday marking the 63rd anniversary of D-Day, the day when Allied Forces landed at Normandy to liberate Europe from Nazi occupation:
"Sixty-three years ago today, American troops and Allied Forces stepped onto the beaches of Normandy to liberate a continent. The Allied attack involved an impossible task: storm an open beach, climb a fortified coastline wall, and turn back an entrenched and well-trained army.
"These brave soldiers would work in secret. But as their commander, General Eisenhower, told them: The eyes of the world would be upon them.' By nightfall, allied forces had suffered 10,000 causalities.
"Yet by the following spring, these soldiers and the newly freed people of Europe would celebrate Victory in Europe, a day we will always know and remember as VE Day.
"Victory in Europe came about through the heroic sacrifices of young Americans fighting far from home on beaches most of us know only by their code names: Omaha, Utah, Gold, Juno, and Sword.
"Their sacrifices on that Longest Day shortened a terrible war and hastened the fall of a brutal and determined enemy of civilization and freedom. Their sacrifices on that day, and during the following days, led to the defeat of the Nazis. We owe our freedom to the men who lived and died that day in Normandy, and to soldiers past and present.
"To them, we again say thank you for your bravery, your sacrifices, and the legacy of service you left to this and future generations."