The French Croix de Guerre avec
Étoile is awarded to Major Royal R . Taylor
(left) and Sgt
Irving T. Shanley (right) at Ste. Mere Eglise, Normandy,
France on June 6, 1946 by General le Gentilhomme. TSgt Robert W.
Speers and Cpl John B. Vogel, Jr. (partially hidden), just to the right of
Sgt Shanley, also received this award.
Taylor, Shanley, Speers and Vogel parachuted into Normandy on D-Day and
remained with the 508th throughout the war.
For this ceremony, a detachment of 508th veterans of the Normandy
invasion was transported by rail from Frankfurt Germany in a plush railcar
once used by the German Luftwaffe Chief Hermann Goering.
The 508th detachment also accepted the French Croix de Guerre with
two Palms and the Fourragére for all units of the 82nd Airborne Division,
including the 508th.
(photos courtesy Irv Shanley)
ST MERE EGLISE, France (AP) ---
More than 5,000 Norman villagers and peasants paid tribute yesterday to
the American 82d airborne division --- which two years ago liberated
this hamlet from the Germans --- in on of several D-day ceremonies held
Twenty officers and enlisted men of the 508th regimen of the
division, selected for devotion to duty under long periods of combat
were awarded the Croix de guerre, with stars and palms, by Gen J P* Le
Gentilhomme military governor of Paris and commander of the French first
Monuments to Allied invasion forces were dedicated in ceremonies at
Colleyville and St Laurent on bloody Omaha Beach in the American Sector.
[The Post-Standard, Syracuse, NY, Friday, June 7, 1946,
* Note: the general's full name was Paul Louis
Le Gentilhomme so these initials are incorrect.