To main content

80th anniversary of D-Day

His Royal Highness the Crown Prince marked D-Day today alongside heads of state and government from the countries that participated in the Normandy landings 80 years ago.


June 6 1944, also known as D-Day, was the first day of the Allied invasion and liberation of France during World War II.

Together with, among others, Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre and Minister of Defence Bjørn Arild Gram, The Crown Prince began the day with a commemoration at Norway's national monument in Hermanville-sur-Mer in Normandy.

Crown Prince Haakon in Hermanville-Sur-Mer in Normandie. Photo: Javad Parsa / NTB

During the ceremony, The Crown Prince inspected the honor guard, followed by musical performances by the Norwegian Armed Forces Staff Band. Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre and the French Minister of Defence Sébastien Lecornu delivered speeches during the ceremony.

The Crown Prince laid a wreath at the Norwegian memorial in Hermanville-sur-Mer. Ola Mosberg, descendant of naval officer Monrad Mosberg, laid flowers on behalf of the descendants along with two local French schoolchildren.

The Crown Prince and Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre met with descendants of four Norwegian soldiers who took part in the Normandy landings in 1944, and heard their stories. Photo: Javad Parsa / NTB 

D-Day 1944 

D-Day was the Allied codename for the Normandy landings on June 6 1944, and is one of the largest military operations ever undertaken. The invasion, meticulously planned, began at dawn with airborne drops of soldiers to secure the flanks. On the first day, 24 000 paratroopers were deployed into battle. 7 000 ships were involved in transportation, facilitating the landing of 156 000 infantry soldiers on the beaches of Normandy.

The Norwegian contribution comprised two fighter squadrons, ten naval vessels, and 43 ships from the merchant navy. The Allied landing forces faced fierce resistance but managed to establish beachheads in several locations. Within six days, the Allies controlled a coastline of 95 kilometers, and over 300 000 Allied soldiers had been landed. Within a month, one million Allied soldiers were on French soil.


After the national ceremony in Hermanville-Sur-Mer, The Crown Prince hosted a reception aboard the Royal Yacht Norge, docked at the port in the city of Caen in Normandy. The Norwegian Armed Forces Staff Band played on the dock as the guests arrived at the reception.

The Royal Yacht Norge is docked outside the city of Caen in Normandy during the commemorations. Photo: Sara Svanemyr, The Royal Court

The Crown Prince was also present at the major international commemoration at Omaha Beach on Thursday afternoon. He was greeted by French President Emmanuel Macron upon his arrival at the ceremony. Heads of state and government from all the countries that participated in D-Day in 1944 were in attendance.

The ceremony included readings of texts and letters, as well as singing and music. President Emmanuel Macron delivered a speech before the playing of the Marseillaise. The commemoration concluded with a flypast in honor of the significant efforts made in the liberation of France and Europe 80 years ago,

Paratroopers landed on the beach during the international ceremony at Omaha Beach. Photo: Reuters


To share this on Twitter or Facebook:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook