It is June 6, 1944. WWII is raging. Today 156,000 American and Canadian Troop’s will land at Normandy, France. With 70lbs of gear our men stand in a landing craft headed toward the beach.
As they move in the shots ring out around them. You can hear the pinging of the Higgins boat as it is pelted. A 19yr old from Wisconsin turns toward his friend and says “today is the day we make history, the day we change the direction of society!”.
As the craft lands and they bail out into the water they immediately sink. They discard most of the 70lbs to swim to shore. They barely make it and… this is just the beginning.
I could continue this story but today I want to tell you about another man. His name is Teddy Roosevelt, JR.
Teddy Roosevelt Jr
Oyster Bay, New York.
After two verbal requests to accompany the leading assault elements in the Normandy invasion had been denied, Brig. Gen. Roosevelt’s written request for this mission was approved and he landed with the first wave of the forces assaulting the enemy-held beaches. He had severe health issues and walked with a cane.
He repeatedly led groups from the beach, over the seawall and established them inland. His valor, courage, and presence in the very front of the attack and his complete unconcern at being under heavy fire inspired the troops to heights of enthusiasm and self-sacrifice.
Although the enemy had the beach under constant direct fire, Brig. Gen. Roosevelt moved from one front to another, rallying men around him, directed and personally led them against the enemy.
Under his seasoned, precise, calm, and unfaltering leadership, assault troops reduced beach strong points and rapidly moved inland with minimum casualties. He thus contributed substantially to the successful establishment of the beachhead in France.
He took the front and center position throughout the battle. I believe he did so because he understood the magnitude of that beach, the turning point in society.
Looking back. What have been the turning points in your life? Some may have not reached them yet. You will know when you do. Maybe it’s now. Maybe it’s even today!
In today’s world we need leaders who think on their own and not swayed by others. I encourage you to look for those turning points, seize the moment, and never forget them.
*the bravest of the brave took that beach 76 years ago today