The French Will Never Forget : 2,500 people gather at Omaha Beach on July 4th
2,500 PEOPLE GATHERED ON OMAHA BEACH IN NORMANDY TO FORM A “HUMAN CHAIN” OF GRATITUDE AND HONOR THE FALLEN AMERICAN HEROES WHO LIBERATED FRANCE DURING WW II
In the spirit of its mission statement, “The French Will Never Forget” (www.thefrenchwillneverforget.com) organized an extraordinary gathering of approximately 2500 people in Omaha Beach, Normandy, on July 4th 2007. The crowd formed on the sand the letters of the phrase: “FRANCE WILL NEVER FORGET”, aimed at honoring the fallen American heroes who scarified their lives to liberate France at the end of WW II.
The United States Ambassador to France, H.E Craig R. Stapleton and his spouse attended the event along with several American and French personalities. They all joined the crowd on the beach and actually helped form with many other people the letter F of FRANCE.
“Our goal is, once again, to demonstrate the deep respect and gratitude of the people of France, for their recovered freedom thanks to America’s extreme sacrifices during the Second World War and which no one can, or will ever forget.” declared the co-founders of the organization.
The site of Omaha Beach was chosen not only for its history, but also because of its symbolism. The beach is located nearby the main American cemetery where thousands of American soldiers who died in this war have been laid to rest.
Prior to the event, there was a ceremony at the cemetery of Omaha Beach with the US Ambassador to lay a flower reef and honor the memories of the heroes fallen there. Numerous representatives of local and national organizations, as well as French and American veterans were in attendance. Arnold Franco, famous US veteran who participated to the liberation of the Eiffel tower flew from the United States with his three grandchildren to attend the whole event.
The event was filmed and photographed from two helicopters and just released to major television and newspaper media in the United States, France, and other countries (in 2003, over 125 US and French TV channels reported on this organization honoring with a rose each of the 60,522 graves of all US soldiers fallen in France).
The event was made possible thanks to the generosity of hundreds of companies, associations, and individuals, such as ALTOUR, AMBER CAPITAL, CALYON, DASSAULT FALCON, NATIXIS CAPITAL MARKETS, SOCIETE GENERALE, and VEOLIA to name only a few.
About The French Will Never Forget (TFWNF) : this non profit organization was founded in 2003 by 4 individuals, Paul Bensabat, Jean-Pierre Heim, Patrick du Tertre and Christian Millet (Presidents and co-founders of this association). The committee in France is composed of Olivier Brane, Emmanuel de la Taille, Anne Colombe de la Taille and Jacques Noel Bilet.
This program is one of the very few grassroots organizations with the objective of reinforcing at all times the friendship between the French and the American Peoples and constantly demonstrate the eternal gratitude that the French people has for its American ally for the sacrifices she did during World war II to liberate France.
At the first event organized in July, 2003 by TFWNF, French children, townspeople, and soldiers all showed their respect to America by laying a single red rose on the graves of every one of the 60,511 American soldiers who died during World War I and II and were buried in France. Its second event was also a tremendous success. In 2004, with the help of others as well, the organization enabled 100 United States war veterans to travel to France to be awarded the Legion of Honor by the President of France. In 2005 the organization single handedly financed a commemorative trip with first class accommodations for 10 WWII US Veterans, last members of the platoon who liberated the Eiffel Tower. Two of them were awarded the Legion of Honor by the French Defense Minister. In 2006 The French will never Forget continued its efforts by participating in person and financially to several ceremonies awarding the Legion of Honor to several US veterans, this time on American soil.
A film is available in low resolution on the following link:
All other high resolution documents are available at :
Login : omaha
Mot de passe/password : omaha
Filming by : FERBUS /RECORS
Architectural Design : Jean-Pierre Heim
Press release : The French Will Never Forget - 101 Park Avenue. Hoboken, NJ 07030