The Catch-up: The most poignant moments from today's D-Day commemorations

What happened?

The sacrifice and heroism of the soldiers who took part in the D-Day landings 75 years ago was honoured today. Moving ceremonies were held in Britain and France to commemorate the largest amphibious invasion in history, and ultimately led to the liberation of Europe from Nazi occupation. A number of surviving veterans attended services and spoke about their experiences.

How did this all start?

The most emotional moments were undoubtedly the testimonies of veterans. 95-year-old Frank Baugh gave his account of D-Day. Surrounded by rows of pristine white graves he said: “My most abiding memory of that day is of seeing our boys. We had been talking to them minutes before they were cut down with machine gun fire. They would fall into the water, floating face down, and we couldn’t get them out. We couldn’t help them and that is my most abiding memory and I can’t forget it.”

93-year-old Harry Billinge, from St Austell in Cornwall, made a final pilgrimage to Normandy to see how thousands of pounds he raised is funding a memorial honouring his fallen comrades. As an 18-year-old Royal Engineer, he landed on Gold Beach at 6.30am on June 6 1944 as part of the first wave of troops.

Veterans sang along to a rendition of “We’ll Meet Again” while linking arms with each other as part of the remembrance service in Arromanches.

In the morning, a lone piper marked the exact moment the landings began, playing a lament on Port Winston.

Read more:

D-Day veterans’ pilgrimage to honour friends who never came back (Evening Standard)

Veteran who was nearly killed by thug travels to Normandy (Yahoo News UK)

Lone piper's poignant lament marks moment landings began (Yahoo News UK)

Six-year-old boy wears great-uncle’s medals at D-Day service (PA News)

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