I was part of a small delegation that was sent last month to Normandy, France, by the National Guard Educational Foundation. It was my first time seeing the National Guard Monument which was dedicated by NGAUS on June 6, 1969, to pay tribute to the Guardsmen who fought in France in World War I and World War II. The monument, located in the French village of Vierville-sur-Mer, overlooks Omaha Beach, the site of the bloodiest action on June 6, 1944, when the Allies invaded Europe.
Rich Goldberg, CEO of R2 Associates, LLC, and a member of the NGEF board of directors, was on hand to ensure that the National Guard Monument was properly kitted out with the American flag, the National Guard flag and the French flag, as well as a bouquet of flowers. The flags were generously donated by Annin Flagmakers and will be replaced free of charge, in perpetuity. Capt. Sarah N. Reich of the Tennessee Air National Guard ensured that all proper protocol was followed. I was there to organize the entire process, as well as to evaluate the condition of the monument for a report to the NGEF board.
The trip was a whirlwind and the team was able to accomplish a lot of mission planning for next year while getting a good sense of what maintenance the National Guard Monument has and still needs.
Although there is plenty to suggest and recommend, the monument is in great shape and is a tremendous, moving reminder of the brave sacrifices made by National Guardsmen in the service of their states, the nation and the world.
Anne Armstrong is the deputy director of the National Guard Educational Foundation.
- See more at: http://www.ngaus.org/blog/13/08/team-visit-national-guard-monument-france#sthash.0Y1pKOwk.dpuf