WN 62

A German Soldier’s Memories of the Defense of Omaha Beach Normandy, June 6, 1944

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In his moving autobiographical account, Hein Severloh tells the story of amphibious landings’ greatest operation in history, when the Allies launched their attack on the Normandy coast against the Atlantic Wall on D-Day, 6 June 1944, with 7000 ships and 13000 aircraft. In his stronghold, WN 62 (Widerstandnest 62 – resistance nest 62), he fired his machine gun and his rifle for nine hours at the GIs who were on the beach (more than 2 000 never got up again).
Pitilessly and grippingly, Severloh describes these dramatic hours during which, in his sector christened Omaha the Bloody, 34000 GIs landed and run up against only 350 German soldiers who defended themselves fiercely. Severloh survived this deluge of fire in circumstances just as frightening as they were eventful, which marked him for the rest of his life.
A lot of publications by war historians, as well as press articles and television programmes have immorta- lised him under the name of Hein Severloh. Until this sad story was published, the Americans did not know the name of the person who had made their landing such a terrible fiasco.


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