The Normandy landings were the landing operations of the Allied invasion of Normandy, also known as Operation Neptune and Operation Overlord, during World War II. The landings started on Tuesday, 6 June 1944 (D-Day) when a massive air assault landing of airborne troops and paratroopers landed shortly after midnight. They were tasked with securing bridges and strategic points, as well as destroying AA and artillery guns prior to the beach landings. The beach landings took place in the morning on a 50-mile stretch of beach divided into five sectors: Omaha, Utah, Gold, Sword, and Juno.
In the Call of Duty series, the events of the Normandy landings have been featured in a total of eleven missions from four games. They are listed here chronologically by operation start time.
101st Airborne DivisionEdit
One of the first to land on French soil at 2330, 5 June 1944, Private Martin of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division was a pathfinder for Cpt. Foley's Baker Company. Upon landing, he was to meet up with Sgt. Heath, his superior, but found him hanging by his parachute from a tree, dead. Taking the fallen beacon equipment from his dead body, Martin defeated light German resistance to set up the beacon and guide his fellow paratroopers to the right landing zone.
Led by Cpt. Foley, Martin and a piecemeal force from various airborne outfits launched an attack on Sainte-Mère-Église. Along the way they destroyed three flakpanzers firing on Allied aircraft, as well as several machine gun nests, encountering heavy resistance along the way. They managed to capture the village, holding on to it despite several counterattacks throughout the night, followed by an extremely heavy final counterattack the morning of 6 June 1944, backed by mortar crew and several tanks. Using a captured MG42 and Panzerfausts, however, they managed to repulse the Germans.
After fending off this attack, Cpt. Foley sent Martin, Pvt. Elder, and Sgt. Moody to drive in a civilian automobile to HQ six miles away at Sainte-Marie-du-Mont to request reinforcements. The mission required them to drive past enemy lines, and despite stalling in the middle of a German-occupied village they managed to hot-wire another car and make their escape to their objective unscathed.
82nd Airborne DivisionEdit
Around midnight on 6 June 1944, elements of the 82nd Airborne Division were scattered all over the French countryside. One group taking part in Operation Detroit, made up of Pvt. Jonathan Shepherd, Pvt. Smith, and Pvt. Rieke, emerged from their crashed glider relatively unharmed. After linking up with other glider survivors, they fended off heavy German counterattacks to complete their objective of capturing inland roads for the invasion force on Utah Beach.
Meanwhile, Pvt. Daniel Ferguson and his squad found themselves in a village far from their planned objective of Sainte-Mère-Église, and made a plan to hijack a German half-track there. Their first attempt at hijacking a German vehicle was foiled by a German and his Panzerschreck, and they had to fight through another series of German counterattacks to finally capture another half-track.
6th Airborne DivisionEdit
Just after midnight on 6 June 1944, the 2nd Oxford and Bucks of the 6th Airborne Division commanded by Sgt. Evans and Captain Price were tasked with capturing Pegasus Bridge, Bénouville. The unit made a bumpy landing in their Horsa glider, knocking Sgt. Evans unconscious for a brief moment. The British captured the bridge successfully and immediately prepared for enemy counterattack. Using the captured German MG42s and Flak 88 guns, they held the bridge against a morning counterattack of infantry and several tanks long enough to be relieved by the 7th Parachute Battalion.
2nd Ranger BattalionEdit
The 2nd Ranger Battalion was tasked with the destruction of guns overlooking the beaches at Pointe du Hoc. The invasion commenced with a landing under the cliffs of Pointe du Hoc. Present during this amphibious landing was Corporal Bill Taylor and Sgt. Randall. Upon landing they experienced heavy MG42 and mortar fire from the Germans firing on the cliffs. Many of the landing craft were hit by mortars, sending men flying and shellshocking those lucky enough to survive. With sheer dedication though, the Rangers were able to climb up to the top of the Pointe.
Once they climbed up, the Rangers found that the howitzers they had to destroy had been hidden and replaced with lookalikes made from hedgehogs and telephone poles to fool recon aircraft. Fighting past a maze of trenches and bunkers, the Rangers made their way to a little village, where urban warfare and room-clearing commenced. The guns were not in the village, however, so the Rangers continued to a crossroads that wound through a thick series of hedgerows, taking out German resistance along the way. Finally, they managed to locate the guns, which they destroyed with thermite bombs.
After a final sweep of the area to clear out the invaders, Pointe du Hoc was taken. The next day, 7 June 1944, brought a heavy German counterattack, which was resisted by the surviving Rangers until Allied tanks and aircraft arrived to save the day.
1st Infantry DivisionEdit
On 0600, 6 June 1944, the 1st Infantry Division took place in the landing on Omaha Beach. Among those present were veterans from North Africa and Italy: Roland Roger, Glenn Hawkins, Alvin Bloomfield, and Stephen Kelly. Others were newer recruits, including John Jackson Smith. These men in Fox Company were sent to the beach not in Higgins landing craft but on an accompanying Landing Craft Gun.
As they approached the beach, the Allies came under heavy mortar fire, destroying a number of craft. Fox Company for the moment was unscathed, and used binoculars to relay the locations of enemy bunkers to friendly barrages. As they approached shore, however, they were finally hit, and the surviving members evacuated into a lifeboat to get to shore.
After landing, Sgt. Hawkins rallied his troops and moved up the beach toward an opening on the bluffs that troops that had already landed were fighting to control. Inside the opening, though, were many enemy machine gun emplacements overlooking a series of barbed wire defenses that held the landed troops from progressing any further. Under heavy enemy fire, combat engineers moved in and set explosives to the defenses, allowing the men to advance.
Members of Fox Company and other infantry units present at the time came across a small trench system near a bunker complex, which housed the original mortar positions that fired on the beaches at the beginning of the invasion. Surviving combat engineer Cpt. Stavro breached the bunker door, and the American infantry stormed the bunker complex. Toward the inland edge of the complex was a FlaK 88 gun that was firing on the beaches. Sgt. Hawkins led his men down a slope toward the gun, captured it, and used it to successfully fend off arriving German reinforcements.
Call of Duty 2 Edit
- Veteran of D-Day - Obtained by beating "Pointe du Hoc" on Veteran difficulty.
- ↑ From the missions Pathfinder, Ste. Mere-Eglise, Ste. Mere-Eglise-Day, and Normandy Route N13.
- ↑ From the missions Scavenger Hunt and Glider Crash.
- ↑ From the missions Pegasus Bridge and Pegasus Bridge-Day.
- ↑ From the missions The Battle of Point du Hoc and Defending the Pointe.
- ↑ From the mission The Great Crusade.