D-Day 75th Anniversary at Cantigny

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Cantigny Park invited veterans and the public to celebrate the 75th D-Day anniversary.

“Days like this are what Cantigny is all about,” said Lou Marsico, vice president of operations for the Robert R. McCormick Foundation at Cantigny. “We’re here to honor our legacy, which is colonel Robert R. McCormick.”

Cantigny’s Connection

McCormick served in the First Infantry Division in World War I, the same division that served as the first wave of troops on D-Day years later.

To honor that sacrifice, Cantigny hosted a full day of events, including re-enactors and informational exhibits. They also hosted a sand artist who built an impressive sculpture, part of which included sand from the very beaches the Allied forces assaulted.

WWII Veterans

But the heart of the D-Day anniversary commemoration was the World War II veterans at the morning ceremony.

“So when we have these special days and these special remembrances, it is such an honor to have the few remaining World War II veterans choose us. There’s a lot of ceremonies today. The fact that they were out here through the help of Honor Flight Chicago is just amazing and it’s really what we’re all about,” Marsico said.

A Special Ceremony

The ceremony was capped off by children at the event placing flowers at the front of the service, with the exception of one carnation, which symbolized those veterans who are no longer with us.

“The thing we can do as a legacy and fulfillment of [McCormick’s] mission is to help people remember and to teach people what the sacrifice was and what it meant to our country and what it will continue to mean going forward,” said Marsico.

Naperville News 17’s Casey Krajewski reports.