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15 October 2014
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Landing on the Normandy Beaches July 9th 1944

by Chris Hawkes

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George Edward Temple in Uniform of 70th Infantry Brigade, 49 WR Div.

Contributed by 
Chris Hawkes
People in story: 
George Edward Temple and an unnamed Pardre
Location of story: 
Sword Beach Normandy
Background to story: 
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
13 July 2005

My Grandfather Mr George Edward Temple, 4447868, WOII Temple an Armourers Sergeant serving with the REME, landed on Sword Beach at Normandy on the 9th July 1944.

When my Grandfather got off the ship and on to the beach it was amongst particularly very heavy gun fire which was going on continously and shells were raining down all over the place!

The best place for a very scared man as my Grandfather has said on many occasions was down a rabbit hole and this is what my Grandfather was looking for and desperately wanted to find.

However whilst my Grandfather was scared whitless and looking for his rabbit hole to get down, firstly to get some protection, also more importantly to get out of the way of the heavy enemy fire and secondly to get some safety!

The Padre who was in front of him, had his bible open in the one hand and was recting from this and was holding his walking stick in the other hand!

The padre was carefully picking his way up the beach amongst the bullets and the shells which were flying every where and was completely unablivious to this which was going on and particularly to the grave danger that he was in!

It was as if he was out for a walk on a lazy Sunday afternoon after Morning service on a quite country village green, something similar to Barton in North Yorkshire.

My Grandfather thought he had found a Guardian Angel and as such he followed him, remarkably neither of them had recieved any wounds or injuries when they both got off the beach.

Granddad is now 94 years of age and still going strong and I am trying to find the funds to obtain his Normandy Medal for him which I think he fully deserves!

He was unable to to return to the Normandy beaches, for the 50th Celebrations of the D-Day Landings in 1994, to collect it personally from the Queen.

I have never forgotten the first time I heard this amazing story and I simply had to tell this one and have it recorded for posterity, also to share it with others which I hope people will enjoy as much as I have.

I feel that this is such a remarkable story, as such I know and feel that I will never forget this, this is one story in particular that I do not ever want to forget!

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