This year, President Joe Biden ensured that history would uncover soldiers' role in global justice commending living service members by name in his address at the 80th D-Day commemoration. (Courtesy photo via X)
This year, President Joe Biden ensured that history would uncover soldiers' role in global justice commending living service members by name in his address at the 80th D-Day commemoration. (Courtesy photo via X)

On the overcast shores of Normandy at Omaha Beach, mourners of French, American and European backgrounds gathered to remember the largest sea invasion in history, D-Day.  

June 6, 1944, is the date forever etched in the heart of World War II veterans who faithfully served in hopes of freeing the Western Hemisphere of Nazi rule. A task successfully charted by soldiers who were often overlooked and confined to separate, segregated units. 

This year, President Joe Biden ensured that history would uncover soldiers’ role in global justice commending living service members by name in his address at the 80th D-Day commemoration. 

“Woody Woodhouse is here, a member of the legendary Tuskegee Airmen who flew over 15,000 sorties during the war,” Biden recalled in front of hundreds including celebrities like Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg who have seamlessly recreated scenes from WWII on screen.

Woodhouse was specifically honored for his work in a unit known as the 332 fighter group, which housed some of the first Black aviators in the United States armed forces during a time when the military was racially divided, which meant African Americans were discouraged from leadership and active combat.

Bound by their subjugation, the young men united and underwent training while at Tuskegee Institute where they were subject to Jim Crow laws and other methods of discrimination. 

Despite deterrence, Woodhouse, a Yale graduate, overcame by answering his call to service with encouragement from his mother. 

He lives on today at 97 years old as one of the only surviving members of the Tuskegee Airmen and finds pride in sharing his story with others.

Biden also shed light on one of the 350,000 women to join the war in a new way during the 1940s.

“Marjorie Stone is here, she enlisted in the women’s branch of the Naval Reserve. She became an aircraft mechanic and spent the war keeping American planes and pilots in the air,” said Biden.

The 100-year-old was inducted into the Women’s Military Memorial in ߲ݴý, D.C. for her service around this time last year. Stone, and others, opened doors for young girls like Madison Marsh, the current and first active-duty Miss America to contribute to the armed forces in more ways than one. 

“Remembering what the veterans have given while they’re still alive, [and] to share that message and their story makes me proud to put on the uniform,” Marsh told The Informer. “It  makes me proud to look at the American flag every day.”

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