World War II veterans will gather and reflect on their recollections of D-Day, during a June 6 ceremony to mark the 70th anniversary.
A pivotal point in World War II history, D-Day signaled the start of the Normandy Invasion, which involved the world’s largest amphibious attack ever by U.S. and allied forces into Western Europe against the French front of Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany.
The event, hosted by Smith Senior Living, will honor veterans residing at Smith Crossing in Orland Park and Smith Village in Chicago.
Smith Village resident Cliff Hullinger, 93, will recount serving in North Africa, and his time spent pinned in a foxhole in Italy, as a sergeant with the Army’s 109th Engineer Battalion.
Smith Crossing resident Bernie Nash, 92, will recall dive-bombing missions during World War II targeting German submarines. He continued with the Navy after the war ended, achieving the rank of two-star rear admiral. He later helped to establish the Agency of Aging, conceived the nation’s first foster grandparent programs and served as an executive director for AARP. The National Association of Social Workers regards him as a pioneer in the field of social work.
All vets in attendance will receive pins commemorating their service and also view a slideshow of authentic World War II era snapshots, and a display of World War II military vehicles. Orland Park Mayor Dan McLaughlin and Will County executive Larry Walsh will also offer remarks.
Scheduled to start at 11 a.m., the event is free and a light lunch is included for those who RSVP by calling 708-326-2300.Subscribe to our email newsletter.