May 202016
 
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Those who served: Honoring D-Day
A lecture by author and historian Jeff Lowdermilk

Saturday June 4, 2016
2 pm
New Mexico History Museum Auditorium
113 Lincoln Avenue
FREE with admission

Gravestone for Eustilio M. Esquibel at the Normandy American Cemetery. Photo by Jeff Lowermilk

Gravestone for Eustilio M. Esquibel at the Normandy American Cemetery. Photo by Jeff Lowermilk

On June 6, 1944, nearly 160,000 American and allied forces stormed a 50 mile stretch of beaches in the Normandy region of France. This WWII invasion was one of the largest amphibious military assaults in history with more than 9000 soldiers were killed or injured that day. The Cemetery at Normandy marks 48 New Mexicans who lost their lives during the battle and the Wall of the Missing notes three additional New Mexican names.

The Normandy American Cemetery overlooks Omaha Beach and the English Channel. Established as the first U.S. cemetery in Europe during World War II, it holds the graves of the thousands of servicemen who died in the D-Day invasion or subsequent missions. Forty-eight of the markers belong to New Mexicans.

Join Jeff Lowdermilk at 2 pm on Saturday, June 4, in the museum auditorium for a presentation honoring the memory of those who were lost. Seating is limited. The lecture is free with museum admission. For the last ten years Mr. Lowdermilk has joined veterans, families, and other community members for the anniversary ceremonies in France. D-Day in Normandy is not only one day, but rather a week-long celebration of freedom. His talk “Those who served: Honoring D-Day” explores the personal connections he has made across this decade of travel and the stories he has gathered. “I have always been fascinated with D-Day. I remember as a kid watching the Longest Day. It moved me. One year I just said, “I’m going to go find these places, these towns, the beaches. It started where I was the outsider looking in and it has gotten to where I am a part of the whole thing. It is important to carry on the memory of these American heroes.”

Jeff Lowdermilk is a writer, photographer, lecturer, and student of World Wars I and II. He has traveled extensively throughout Europe, documenting the path detailed in his grandfather’s World War I diary and resulting in the book, Honoring the Doughboys: Following My Grandfather’s World War I Diary. He also wrote Saluting America’s World War I Heroes, a historical and dedicatory piece centered on his experiences at the 87th anniversary of the Armistice. His photographs have been displayed at the National World War I Museum in Kansas City, Missouri, and also were featured in the 2010 Annual Report of the American Battle Monuments Commission. A passionate and creative storyteller, Lowdermilk leads presentations and lectures around the world that weave together his rich imagery, personal anecdotes, and meticulous historical research. He lives in Santa Fe with his wife, Annie. For more information on his work and presentations, visit www.jefflowdermilk.com.

For more information about the museum, log onto www.nmhistorymuseum.org.

The New Mexico History Museum, 113 Lincoln Avenue, in Santa Fe, New Mexico, is part of a campus that includes the Palace of the Governors, a National Treasure and the oldest continuously occupied public building in the United States; the Fray Angélico Chávez History Library; the Palace of the Governors Photo Archives; the Press at the Palace of the Governors; and the Native American Artisans Program. A division of the Department of Cultural Affairs, its exhibitions and programs are supported by the Museum of New Mexico Foundation

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