To my two parents on D-Day

Last updated 10:00 09/06/2014
DAD: John James, Sub-Lieutenant, RNVR
MUM: Mary Wilson James, WREN

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In memory of my father and mother, John James,Sub-Lieutenant RNVR, and Mary Wilson James, WREN, both from Glasgow, who both took part in this significant day in history, June 6 1944. 

My father was a ship's engineer on the HMS Princess Astrid, which was one of the first ships to land troops on the beach south of the River Seine, Normandy, on the coast of France.

A Norwegian destroyer Svenner hit a mine only 50 metres away, but an hour later at 6:15am, they dropped the Landing Craft Assault filled with troops into the water.

My mother was helping track the progress of the landing, in the Naval Operations room, as an officer in the WRENs, which must have been pretty scary for her.

My father was at all the British landings of the war from Dunkirk, to Singapore, but D-Day was the most important, and was the turning point which shaped the final outcome.

It was the New Zealanders Dad met during the war that influenced my parents to emigrate here in 1954, when I was 9 years old.

I have always been so grateful that I was given the chance to become a Kiwi.

June 6 was always a significant day in our family.

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