Today is the 75th anniversary of D-Day, the pivotal World War II Allied invasion of Normandy, France that led to the defeat of Nazi Germany.
In Dayton, news of the invasion was announced in factories making products for the war effort over public address systems or posted on bulletin boards. Churches across the city opened early for worshipers. At Temple Israel, a special invasion prayer service was held at night.
The June 6, 1944, edition of the Dayton Daily News described the mood of the community under the headline, “City Takes Invasion News Calmly; Prayers Arranged”
“As the people of Dayton awoke to go about their daily tasks – 99 percent the production of war materials – to stop the Nazi juggernaut, they met the first announcement with mixed feelings.
“First came a sense of exultation and pride that United Nations forces had at last gained the position which enables them to attack the most powerful military force which the world had ever conceived.
“Next came the feeling of anxiety and worry as mothers, fathers and relatives and friends thought of the flower of American manhood participating in an attack to annihilate the powerful German hordes and return this nation and the world as well to peaceful pursuits and to the promotion of world comity and goodwill.
“As the thousands of Dayton citizens went to their war tasks in factories their dominating thoughts were increased production to continue to turn out the sinews of war so that the great struggle now in progress may be ended as quickly as possible and that the young men and women who have gone to the war can return home safe and sound.
“Theirs was the determination founded in patriotism.”