Sainte-Marie-du-Mont is a quintessential Normandy village just a couple of kilometers south of Utah Beach.  A beautiful, centuries old church is at the center of town and it was a key landmark for both sides in the conflict for control of the village.

It was quite unremarkable in terms of major D-Day events, but that is probably what makes it so appealing; it’s like so many other French hamlets, villages and towns in this region.

That’s not to say Sainte-Marie-du-Mont isn’t full of stories and experiences of the fighting forces on D-Day.  You have to go there to experience what it was like to be a paratrooper of the 101st Airborne Division roaming the village in the early hours of the invasion.  Going from street to street, house to house in search of the enemy.  The village walls around the centre ville are full of historical markers and plaques telling these individual stories of D-Day.

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