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June 4, 2004

QUINN HONORS D-DAY VETERANS ON 60TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE LANDING ON NORMANDY BEACH Quinn pays tribute with French Consul General Dominique Decherf at Oak Ridge Cemetery in Springfield

SPRINGFIELD—Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn joined with French Consul General Dominique Decherat at Oak Ridge Cemetery in
Springfield to pay tribute to the veterans of D-Day on the 60th Anniversary of the landing on Normandy Beach.
“The D-Day invasion was the largest military operation ever undertaken. Of the 150,000 service men who
participated in the attack, more than 14,000 were killed or injured,” said Quinn.  “This day is a sobering reminder of the
high price that we must pay to safeguard the ideals of liberty and justice.”
The memorial ceremony included the singing of the United States and French National Anthems, posting of the
colors, presentation of certificates, benediction, military salute and the playing of “Taps.”
 “The moral stakes were never higher as the Nazi regime tightened its grip on Europe.  The free world united as
one large band of brothers to launch an epic battle on the beaches of Normandy,” said Quinn. 
According to U.S. Army statistics, approximately 6,000 Illinois troops participated in the D-Day landings and an estimated 1,400 are still living today.
The World War II Memorial Site in Springfield is being built to honor the 987,000 Illinois men and women who served in World War II and the 22,000 Illinois citizens who died in pursuit of liberty. The Memorial centerpiece will be a globe 12 feet in diameter representing the world in conflict during World War II. It will be surrounded by a granite wall engraved with the names and dates of major battles of the Pacific and European theaters of war. A central plaza of personalized engraved bricks will complete the design.
            “Today, in Iraq and Afghanistan, Illinois soldiers are continuing the fight to preserve freedom,” said Quinn.  “On the homefront, we can support our soldiers by helping their families.”
The Illinois Military Family Relief Fund provides financial assistance to the families of Illinois National Guard members and reservists.  The Fund - which helps families with rent, car payments and utility bills - has distributed more than $1.3 million to 2,444 Illinois military families.
To find out how to support our troops, visit www.OperationHomefront.org, which has garnered 7,068,451 hits and is one of the most informative websites regarding U.S. troops in the nation.

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