Normandy commemorates D-Day with small crowds, big heart

  • World War II reenactors gather on Omaha Beach in Saint-Laurent-sur-Mer, Normandy, on Sunday, June 6, 2021, the day of 77th anniversary of the assault that helped bring an end to World War II. While France is planning to open up to vaccinated visitors starting next week, that comes too late for the D-Day anniversary. So for the second year in a row, most public commemoration events have been canceled. (AP Photo/David Vincent)

COLLEVILLE-SUR-MER, France — When the sun rises over Omaha Beach, revealing vast stretches of wet sand extending toward distant cliffs, one starts to grasp the immensity of the task faced by Allied soldiers on June 6, 1944, landing on the Nazi-occupied Normandy shore.