Normandy residents alive during WWII recall horrific occupation

PICAUVILLE, FRANCE (WIS) Seventy years later, we remember the lives lost during the conflict in Normandy. Historians estimate 350,000 French civilians were killed.

In the small town of Picauville in Normandy, the entire town come out to pay homage to the veterans who set them free after the invasion of Europe. 70 years after D-Day. Their gratitude remains stronger than ever, especially for the 82nd airborne division that landed in the area.

"These guys are like Cary Grant walking down Hollywood boulevard," said Tommy Benza. "It's amazing!"

Janine King was 10 when the Germans took over the town of Picauville.

"It was very very frightening," King said. "I can remember them coming into the street in the lorries, with their guns pointing out at you, and big silence."

Another Picauville said the lots of people lives were put on hold during that time.

"For three or four years, they were ruled by the Germans," said Liz Vernon. "And when they were free, lots of people lost their lives to do that. And they appreciate that and they will never forget."

Follow WIS:   

Copyright 2014 WIS. All rights reserved.