Welcome to another Factual Friday! Yesterday, June 6th, was the 69th anniversary of D-Day for Operation Overlord (also known as the Normandy landings) in World War II.
The “D” in D-Day doesn’t actually stand for anything according to many sources. The “D” is just the first letter of Day and thus, D-Day. D-Day references the date an amphibious operation in a conflict is kicking off. H-Hour is the same as D-Day in that the “H” doesn’t stand for anything and refers to the hour the operation commences. Only the days after the operation begins are referred to as D+1 (June 7, 1944), D+2, etc. (this doesn’t apply to hours).
Eisenhower himself believed it to be for “departed” date and since every amphibious assault has one, this is known as the D-Day.
Most people think of D-Day as June 6, 1944 because at that point in history (and this hasn’t yet been eclipsed), this was the largest amphibious operation to be undertaken in a conflict to date. The operations in the Pacific had D-Days and H-Hours also.
It is believed D-Day and H-Hour were both coined during World War I. This is the first record the U.S. Army has of its use.
Some interesting facts about Operation Overlord (landing in Normandy):
Approximately 156,000 Allied troops landed one way or the other in Normandy.
Approximately 11,600 Allied aircraft were used in support of the operation.
Approximately 6,900 Allied vessels took part (the Navy called it Operation Neptune).
There were approximately 12,000 Allied casualties.
As always, have a great Friday!