New Orleans WWII Museum Commemorates 72nd Anniversary Of D-Day Today

NEW ORLEANS – Each year The National WWII Museum’s D-Day commemoration celebrates the Museum's birthday, but also calls to mind the men who landed on the beaches in Normandy more than 70 years ago.

         This year features Maxine Giannini, whose late-husband, Ugo, was a combat artist and later author of Drawing D-Day: An Artist's Journey Through War. She will recount her husband's experiences landing on Omaha Beach on D-Day as one of a platoon of military police assigned to the 29th Division, the drawings he made that day and the impact it had his life.

         Joseph Balkoski, author and 29th Division historian, will also reflect on the history and strategy of June 6, 1944.

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         Additionally, the museum will offer visitors the chance to climb aboard its Higgins Boat, among many other learning opportunities throughout the day.

         When it was founded in 2000, the Museum was dedicated entirely to the story of D-Day in Normandy. With founder and noted author Stephen E. Ambrose at the helm, it opened June 6, 2000, in New Orleans—home of shipbuilder Andrew Higgins, whose production of the amphibious Higgins Boats led Eisenhower to describe him as "the man who won the war for us." Now, 16 years later, The National WWII Museum is considered one of the most popular museums in the world, and home to historical collections and scholarship that span the entire scope of America's WWII story. The Museum is also a center for ongoing research and outreach, innovating every day to reach students, teachers, veterans, and visitors like never before.


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Monday, June 6, 2016, D-Day Programming


9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

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Higgins Boat Tours

Louisiana Memorial Pavilion

         Visitors will be afforded the extremely rare opportunity to board the Museum LCVP, or Higgins Boat, as a curator explains the craft's role in the D-Day invasion. Reenactors from the USS Alabama interact with visitors inside the boat.


D-Day Remembered

H. Mortimer Favrot Orientation Center

         Experience the news of D-Day as those on the Home Front did through newsreels and film footage of the day.


Hands-On History

Outside Campaigns of Courage

         Curators will exhibit uniforms and equipment used by American and German soldiers during World War II. Visitors will be able to pick up and try on original and reproduction helmets, uniforms, boots, packs, and other personal equipment.


Living History Corps and Artifacts from the War in Europe

Outside Campaigns of Courage

         Museum artifacts will be on display as WWII reenactors wearing the uniforms and carrying the equipment of both the Allied and Axis forces share their knowledge about the day-to-day lives of military men and women and the broader lessons of World War II.


10:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

Victory Belles Performance

US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

         The Victory Belles will perform a selection of war-era songs.


11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

D-Day Ceremony

US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

         Ceremony commemorating 72nd anniversary of D-Day


12:00 p.m.

The National WWII Museum's 16th Anniversary

US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

         Enjoy a cupcake after the Victory Belles sing Happy Birthday.


1:00 p.m.

Meet the Author

US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

         Maxine Giannini presents Drawing D-Day: An Artist's Journey Through War


6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Meet the Author

US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center

         Joseph Balkoski presents The Last Roll Call: The 29th Infantry Division Victorious, 1945


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