REMEMBERING AND INTERNATIONAL FRIENDSHIP
The name of « Carentan » is forever associated with a major chapter in American military history, within the battle of Normandy, and hence, the battle of France. The fierce fighting that eventually led to the liberation of our City on June 12 1944 bore a crucial strategic importance in the establishment of a continuous front line between the Omaha and Utah Beach heads. The battle of Carentan and its successful outcome are the founding act of the prestigious 101st Airborne Division. Our City and the numerous actions of bravery are a genetic part of the Division. Bounds get tighter every year and the newly established sister ship connection between Carentan les marais and Hopkinsville proves it even more. The significance, the historical value and the amount of sufferings associated with the liberation of Carentan send a new range of responsibility for the actual and the new generations, to commemorate, and to remember. It is indeed our duty to commemorate every year those tragic, yet essential events for our region, and our country. To honor the fallen, to remember the facts and to rejoice on a restored peace with our Allies, and also with our past foes motivate our will to welcome every year, in a solemn and joyful way, those who will not forget the price of freedom. I can therefore rejoice to see every year new initiatives meant to commemorate our liberation.
Jean Pierre Lhonneur
Mayor of Carentan
CARENTAN, LAND OF THE FREE
The cabbage patch monument is a place of remembrance located along the former Highway N°13 between Carentan and Saint Côme du Mont. This monument, dedicated to the 101st Airborne Division, and more specifically to Charley Company, 502nd Parachute Infantry, is set in what used to be a series of small fields, where locals used to grow cabbages and other vegetables. Named cabbage patch, this place saw some of the fiercest fightings, when US Paratroopers and German Fallschirmjaeger locked in hand to hand fightings for days on on june 10th till 12th. The infamous baïonnette charge led by the 3rd battalion of the 502nd PIR took place a few hundred yard away.
Carentan les marais has chose this site as the June 6th commemorative site.
Civilian and Military officials from all allied Nations, including Germany, gather there to greet veterans, and pay tribute to the fallen. American heavy transport planes usually fly over as légion of Honor medals are being awarded to veterans. Troops from all nations then walk through town to the City Hall for anther brief moment of commemoration at the Signal Monument. A huge party by the marina allows soldiers and civilians from ll nations to get together in a great moment of friendship. Following a Rock concert, a firework display ends a memorable day.
RE ENLISTMENT CEREMONY
For the first time in Normandy, 21 soldiers renewed their oath to the Constitution of the United Sates of America as they re enlisted in the service. These 21 soldiers belong to the 101st Airborne Air Assault and they were privileged to swear this oath Place de la République in Carentan at the very spot where 76 years ago, three medal ceremonies were held for 101st Airborne soldiers, heroes of the liberation of Carentan. General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff delivered a powerful speech, with Major General Brian Winski, Commanding officer of the 101st Airborne Air Assault, along 101st veteran Tom Rice in attendance.