When you read or see documentaries about D-Day and Canadians on Juno Beach you just imagine this little stretch of beach with the soldiers running up from the water shoulder-to-shoulder.

It is amazing to see the actual size and scope of the operation. 8 km from east to west is the area Canadian regiments came ashore. That to me was the biggest eye opener.

It’s unreal walking on the beaches knowing that Canadians were killed on the very spot that today is a sunny seaside family destination. We owe so much to those young Canadians.

The pictures are now and 1944. The first is Queens Own house at Bernieres-sur-Mer, the next is from the beach at St. Aubin-sur-Mer, and last picture are the first Poppies I have seen along the beach between the two places.

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Photos above and below: Queens Own house at Bernieres-sur-Mer, in 1944 and today.

On 6 June 1944, the 3rd Canadian Infantry Division landed in Normandy on Juno Beach. At 8:05 am, the Queen’s Own Rifles Regiment set foot on this Norman beach in bad conditions : the amphibious tanks were late, and the preliminary artillery bombing left intact the German defences. At 8:30 am, infantry reinforcement, among them the French Canadians of Le Régiment de La Chaudière, and tanks of The Fort Garry Horse slammed ashore, Bernières-sur-Mer was liberated.

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Photo above and below: St. Aubin-sur-Mer in 1944 and today. St. Aubin-sur-Mer is located at the eastern end of Nan Sector of Juno Beach.

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Photo below: Poppies near the landing sites.

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– Shaun

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